Loser strikes Gold!
First Love – Inspiring others to fall in love with Jesus
For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it Matthew 16 v 25
Have you been watching the Rio 2016 Olympics? Isn’t it thrilling? You have to admire the commitment and determination of the athletes. These men and women sacrifice so much year after year, dedicating their life to their sport for occasions like these, where they can prove themselves as Olympic Champions.
As much as the event will be exciting and memorable for the athletes the ultimate goal is winning the race. The Christian life has often been referred to as a race, the apostle Paul himself likened his own life to running the race “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith”. (2 Timothy 4v7).
Losing is almost always never an option. You don’t turn up to lose, well in competitive sports anyway. However this is not the principle that Jesus taught in Matthew 16v25 when he was teaching his disciples about living the Christian life. He said to His disciples, ““If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it”. Losing is not something that comes naturally, so what do we lose when we surrender our life to Christ? In my own experience of following God’s plan for my life, the benefits to losing my life to salvation has meant losing my fears, anxieties, negative thoughts and strongholds. And he is helping me daily to lose selfishness, pride, and bitterness. However the greatest loss of course is my life, he has saved me from eternal separation from him.
This divine exchange is not all about losing though, Jesus clearly states that there are benefits to losing our life for his sake. He says that whoever (that’s you and me) loses his/ her life will find it. So what do we gain? Well, where do I start? Not only do we receive a new life when we give our life to Jesus as it says in 2 Corinthians 5 v17, “anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person, the old life is gone; a new life has begun. The new life that is guaranteed is everlasting and it doesn’t stop there. If you want to know what else is on offer then just spend a little time reading Romans5:1-11, where Paul highlights a few other benefits including his peace, grace, hope and a purposeful life.
I don’t know about you but that list certainly beats winning a gold medal once every 4 years. Oh, and in case I forget, once the race is over it’s not the end as we gain eternal life in heaven. So I don’t know about you but this losing streak for Christ’s sake doesn’t sound that bad after all. For when we lose our life for his sake we gain the greatest prize.
Go team Jesus!
Until next time