Athlete, This Keeps Us Going Hard
1 Timothy 4:10 (NIV)
That is why we labor and strive, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and especially of those who believe.
Do you know someone who plays really hard, who works relentlessly, who labors consistently, who keeps pounding away passionately, who keeps showing up, who never seems to take off a possession, bringing sustained effort ‘til the final buzzer, ‘til each day is done? Who is it? Is it you?
What drives someone like that? Is it better genes? Is it superior aerobic capacity? Is it better pay or more reward? Is it personal pride, a sense of approval?
Scripture points to another answer. This one. HOPE. Here are the details.
ENERGIZING HOPE: Hope drives hard work. The greater the hope, the harder you fight. If your hope is good, you’ll go hard every time. If it isn’t, you won’t. We “labor and strive” because of hope.
BETTER HOPE: Living hope is a better hope. If your hope is stale, old or dead, your work becomes that way too. If your hope is living, your labor lives with great vitality.
ROOTED HOPE: Hope activates when it’s well planted, when it’s placed in something solid. Hope for hope’s sake doesn’t work. It’s unplanted. Unplanted hope dies. But hope that’s well rooted lives. The Bible says to “put our hope in the living God.” That hope will root and grow. That soil is alive.
UNIVERSAL HOPE: No one offers universal hope coverage like God, “who’s the Savior of all people.” That means all people for all time. Quite a deal! No situation then short of death disqualifies. Jesus saves. Jesus rescues, redeems, restores. He lifts. He lights. He delivers. ALL. That offers a world of hope to a world of people, doesn’t it?!
RENEWABLE HOPE: God offers an ongoing hope “especially for those who believe.” It’s His pledge and His delight to keep on saving in this world and rescuing those who trust and follow Him. He loves to get His rescue on a roll. That really encourages and renews hope.
It keeps His people going long after others quit. They hang tough because their hope is being renewed.
Reflect: How do you rate your current work ethic? What might be affecting your ability to go hard? How much hope are you operating with? Do you need a godly hope infusion? Who could you bring some hope to today?
A prayer to consider: LORD, fill me with good hope, godly hope, living hope. I need the stuff that lasts, that builds toughness, that can endure anything, just like Your Son. Help me to put my hope in You. May I labor and strive undaunted, undeterred, uninterrupted … for your great glory and my joy in You. Amen.