Here’s a passage that I read earlier today from I Corinthians 9. As a dabbler in running since high school, I have always identified with 24-26. However, when I read this passage again today taken from The Message version of the Bible, I was especially inspired by Paul‘s words in the verses that precede this. I want to be in on the Message.
everyone, I have voluntarily become a servant to any and all in
order to reach a wide range of people: 20 religious,
nonreligious, 21 meticulous moralists, loose-living
immoralists, 22 the defeated, the demoralized–whoever. I
didn’t take on their way of life. I kept my bearings in
Christ–but I entered their world and tried to experience things
from their point of view. I’ve become just about every sort of
servant there is in my attempts to lead those I meet into a
God-saved life. 23 I did all this because of the Message. I
didn’t just want to talk about it; I wanted to be in on it!
24 You’ve all been to the stadium and seen the athletes race.
Everyone runs; one wins. Run to win. 25 All good athletes train
hard. They do it for a gold medal that tarnishes and fades.
You’re after one that’s gold eternally. 26 I don’t know about
you, but I’m running hard for the finish line. I’m giving it
everything I’ve got. No sloppy living for me! 27 I’m staying
alert and in top condition. I’m not going to get caught napping,
telling everyone else all about it and then missing out myself.