#884. Press on towards the goal - Philippians 3:12-14 (25/8/23)
Welcome to this Come to Jesus Daily devotional. For the near future, we put our Luke series on pause as we have some stand-alone summer devotionals. I hope you find them helpful.
‘Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining towards what is ahead, I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus.’ (Philippians 3:12-14)
Lesson: We are to understand God’s destiny for us and then use all available resources for this goal.
In any sport, such as football, we need to be inspired by a vision and then to do all that we can to work toward it. It’s no good desiring to raise The World Cup or win int the Athletics World Championships only to eat pizza and fail to train! Unfortunately, this is how many of us live our Christian lives.
Not that I have arrived at the goal
There are many good and noble goals that we can have. However, there is a vision and goals that all Christians are to share. We are all to have a vision of our eternal destiny with God in the ‘New heavens and new earth’. In Christ, this is our destiny and is to influence all that we do in life.
Our text today reads: ‘Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal.’ In this life, we will never ‘obtain all this’ or ‘arrive at the goal’.
In this life, we are growing in Christlikeness but none of us will 'arrive' this side of glory. Therefore, we are not to become proud, satisfied and complacent. We are to have this attitude: ‘I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it.’ None of us have ‘arrived’.
I press on toward Jesus’ goal for me
May each of us grow in the kind of zeal and dedication that we read here. May we all be able to say, “I press on…one thing I do…I strain towards…I press on…toward the goal”. Growth in Christlikeness is to be our obsession. I love the way that we read of the pursuit of spiritual growth:
‘Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.’ (1 Corinthians 9:24-27)
Let’s not be those who are ‘aimless’ or have the wrong aims! It’s pointless to run a race but fail to follow the course of the race organizer! Don’t wear yourself out on dead works.
We are to understand God’s destiny for us and then use all available resources for this goal.
I wonder what your vision for your life is and what your goals are? Many have just got their exam results and many will be excited about the new doors that they will walk through in life. Many have a vision and goals around work, housing, relationships, having children, travel, retirement… but do we understand that becoming like Jesus in holiness is the Christian's destiny and is to be our greatest ambition?
COMMUNITY GROUP NOTES AND STUDY
Until September I'll not be producing a group study. However, if you meet with your group why not simply use one of the devotionals as a basis for your discussion together?