Eyes on the Prize

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Hebrews 12:2 NIV fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Biblegateway.com

Focus.   An action that takes conscious effort.  It can produce successful outcomes or unproductive paralysis.  Our human lives driven to succeed is divided into three parts; mind, body, and soul.

The mind is our most powerful asset and can determine how the other parts function.  Some days it can inspire, others it can deteriorate but always seeking the what, when, why, and how of any given situation.  Constantly analyzing and finding the flaws to sculpt the sought after “perfect” life.

When trouble comes, our mind seeks an escape route. We turn to mindless entertainment and the off switch to let it take a needed break.

If engagement is needed, our body and soul become necessary to the function.  They activate and the three are one.

Philippians 2: 5-8 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; 7 rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross!

Our body was uniquely made and goes through many stages.  It starts off growing and developing.  As quickly as it started its development, it comes to a screeching halt.  Now we are left with a responsibility to maintain this ownership.

How easy it is to keep it moving when our mind is motivated and our soul content.  In contrast, how painfully restless it becomes when we are mindless and dissatisfied.  A desire seeps in to be thinner, stronger, faster.

1 Corinthians 6: 19-20 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.

Our souls are parched as we restlessly sit and numbly think.  In turn, when we move and ponder our soul swirls with emotions.  Day to day the mood sways with the wind.  Decisions are made and goals are set, but do we have the stamina to continue the fight to maintain each part in complete harmony?

Philippians 3: 15-21

15 All of us, then, who are mature should take such a view of things.And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. 16 Only let us live up to what we have already attained.

17 Join together in following my example, brothers and sisters, and just as you have us as a model, keep your eyes on those who live as we do. 18 For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. 19 Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things. 20 But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.

Jesus had the pleasure of having the human experience.  God loved us to want to understand our plight.  A mind of selfish desires, a body easily molded, and a soul that fluctuated by mood.  Through His word we are given instructions so that our complex human lives can be managed to bring forth the fruit of His labor.

Our minds need to become sharp.  Reading His word, contemplating His wisdom, and turning to prayer and praise when questions arise.

Philippians 4: 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

The magnificent body we have each been given, needs to become still.  Still to hear God’s coaching.  Still to seek out foods that nourish the well being to accept His calling.  Yet, active when needed , to tire the soul so that to prime us for His purpose.  The body is the temple to which we worship Him.

Acts 2: 26 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest in hope,

A moody soul can not rest in hope.  A soul that puts aside childhood dreams and worldly desires and takes up God’s daily bread, will be full of unexplained joy in unfortunate circumstances.   Settling in, while knowing that the true prize lies in basking in the light of complete freedom.  Heaven on earth.  A means to a glorious beginning.  Completeness in our minds, our bodies, and our souls.

Matthew 6: 9-11

“This, then, is how you should pray: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,10 your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us today our daily bread.

Philippians 3: 7-14

But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. 10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.

12 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. 13 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 toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

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