Wednesday, April 8th, 2015
Paul's Powerful Priorities (Part 22, Conclusion)
Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.
1 Corinthians 9:24-27 (NKJV)
I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:14 (NKJV)
Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love Him.
James 1:12 (NIV)
Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown.
Revelation 3:11 (NKJV)
Paul was into performance. As an actor, he entered the field of media. He claimed every stage he was offered and refused none. From theaters to homes, no crowd was too large or too small. From kings to beggars, no person was too high or too low. From Asia to Europe, no place was too near or too far.
Paul was into prizes. He sold every thing he had to buy the field with great treasure and the pearl of great price.* As a fighter, he knew his opponent and fought deliberately. As a runner, he knew his Goal and ran relentlessly. As an evangelist, he knew God's Word and spoke brilliantly.
So that at earth's conclusion, he could say these words: 'I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith' (2 Timothy 4:7).
So that at eternity's entrance, he would hear these Words: 'Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your Lord' (Matthew 25:21).
Actors, models and talent for Christ: As performers, you enter the field of media. Like Paul, claim every good stage and refuse none. From theaters to homes, consider no crowd too large or too small. From kings to beggars, consider no person too high or too low. From local shows to Hollywood hills, consider no place too near or too far.
Value the right prizes: the Pearl of great price, the Way as your Guide, His Words as your Script, the Cross that He bore, the nails in His Hands, the crown on His Head, the glory as His, the cross He gave you, your polish and prep, your order to shine, your witness off-set, your whole-hearted love, your friends and your fans, the Smile on God's Face... so finish the race.
These are among your powerful priorities.
* The Parable of the Hidden Treasure: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%2013:44&version=NKJV
* The Parable of the Pearl of Great Price: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%2013:45-46&version=NKJV
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Paul's Powerful Priorities series.