What Do You Do in Times Like These?
By Steve Williams
The Bible tells us in 1 Cor. 9:24 “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain”. And then in Philip. 3:14 “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”
We are living in uncertain times. Things are looking bleaker as the days go on. People are getting discouraged, facing the fear of not knowing what to do. But Paul tells the Child of God what to do and that is to keep on going or press on. Life is not always a joy ride, many times it is a rough ride. We will face death, loss of health, aging, sickness, loss of jobs, etc… Right now, people are letting themselves be overtaken with fear and anxiety. People are asking questions like these: What am I to do, it feels like my world is falling apart around me? Am I going to get this dreaded Coronavirus? What has happened to my 401K? What in the World is the Lord doing? What am I to do? Is there a secret that I need to know about? I don’t know if you would call it a secret it just a fact of life, Paul tells us in these 2 verses that we just need to press on or keep going. You cannot give up when hard times come. Why not you say? When you give up you make the God you say you believe in smaller than you are. How do you press on then you ask? Well, Paul gives us four great truths in these two verses.
1st We must understand there are things we must face in life, and the day that we are living in is one of those things. There’s Uncertainty, Fear, Doubt, Anxiety. Paul’s describes the Christian life as a race, (they which run 1Cor 9:24.) The question we need to ask ourselves is Am I Running? Am I In the Race? See life is one hurdle after another, you cross one hurdle then you go to the next until the course is completed. People who stop in life, and never cross their next hurdle, will never see what they are missing. Remember you have already crossed others hurtles in life and you can cross this one too.
2nd Paul tells us that there are goals we must set. Paul says: (run that you may obtain. 1Cor 9:24) What is life without setting goals? It is our goals that help us make it over the hurdles of life. We need to stay focused on the goal or goals we have set. One goal that Christians need to set is not to let fear overcome them. People are charging the grocery store, running to the banks to get their money, gun shops to buy guns and ammo, to shoot the person who is going to come to try and take their hamburger or toilet paper away from them. Christians my Bible says in Joshua 1:9 “Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” Hey God’s people need to quit loading up on the things of this world and start stocking up on the things of God. His Presence, His Protection, His Peace, His Power, and His Word. Christians seem to have lost sight of their goal Heaven, and have focused more on this old world that we are going to leave behind.
3rd Paul tells us that there are disciplines that need to be practiced in our lives. Paul says: (I press toward the mark Phil 3:14.) Discipline is one of the most heated terms of our time, it goes right along with patience. But have you ever noticed how many times discipline is a part of a winner and a faithful Christian’s life? Paul was not able to accomplish what he did in life without discipline in his life. Understand if our mind is not disciplined it won’t be long till the body is following your mind. If you keep your mind on something long enough it’s not very long till you have done it or figure out a way to justify whatever you want to. If you expect to make it in times like these, you are going to have to be disciplined. It’s been said, “The undisciplined is a headache to themselves, and a heartache to others, and is unprepared to face the stern realities of life. Folks that’s are where we are at today, we are living in real-world, not a fantasy world. So, discipline yourself to pray and study God’s Word and be more Committed to God instead of to yourself.
4th Paul tells us that there are prizes to be won. Paul says (I press toward the mark for the prize Phil 3:14) It’s never a bad thing to remind ourselves of the prize awaiting those who live to please God. I believe Paul often did this so he could keep ongoing. The Christian prize awaits them on the other side of this World Heaven. Remember God didn’t make us to sit in this world but to come out of this world.
Words of Wisdom: In Times Like These
- Trust in the LORD with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Proverbs 3:5-6
- Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. 1 John 4:4
- I can do all things through Christ that strengthen me. Phil 4:13
- Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. Isaiah 41:10
Steve Williams is the pastor of Berry Chapel Baptist Church in Spruce Pine, North Carolina.