I Corinthians 9:24 “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.”
This past Wednesday, Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine were both elected into the baseball Hall of Fame.
Maddux, whose nickname was “Mad Dog”, was one of the most intelligent pitchers to ever play the game. With a cool demeanor, precise control and thoughtful pitch selection, the un-imposing Maddux won four Cy Young awards and 355 total games in his career.
Glavine, like Mad Dog, was never menacing or aggressive. “Glav” was an ice-cold, fierce competitor on the mound. He never gave into a hitter. Never. His steely looks and dogged determination enabled him to win 20 games in a season five times, in addition to two Cy Young awards and 305 career victories.
Both men shared one thing in common. They strove for excellence. They “ran in order to receive a crown.” In the same way that an Olympic athlete is “temperate in all things” in order to earn a Gold Medal, you and I are to discipline ourselves and strive to be excellent in all that we do for Christ.
Live your life in a manner which glorifies God. Do not settle for “second place”. Run the race in order to win a reward which does not perish, but lasts for eternity.
Lord, I commit myself to excellence in the way that I live. I will maintain self-control in order to run the race and receive the prize. Help me to be excellent in all that I do. In the name of Jesus, Amen.