But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. (Acts 20:24 NKJV)
Imagine for a moment that you are running a race that is ten laps long. And let's just say that you are in first place for nine of those ten laps. Not only are you in first, but you are creaming the competition. So when you come to the tenth lap, you think, "What's the point? I'm obviously the winner here. I'm going home." Guess what? You don't get first place, second place, or even an honorable mention. You don't get a gold medal, silver medal, or bronze medal. You are disqualified because you didn't finish the race.
In the same way, it isn't enough for you to do well in the first five years or the next twenty years of your Christian life. You have to cross the finish line. That is why the apostle Paul, when he was leaving the elders of Ephesus, said in his departure speech, "But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God" (Acts 20:24).
That is what we should all be aiming for. The apostle Paul wanted to win the spiritual race. We should want to win it as well. And that is why this is not the time to be easing up. This is the time to pick up the pace. This is the time to pour it on.
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