Know HIS Ways……………

————–the Lord stood on a wall made with a plumb line

The Challenge with Competition Part (V)

Written By: Karline Fischer - Feb• 08•19

This a continuation from last devotional on how we can refrain from competition.

Third, we need to remind ourselves of our identity in Christ regularly. When we get older in the Lord, we have a tendency to think that our identity in Christ is settled. As a result, we just get busy with life and doing other things. However, any good relationship requires us to be in good and loving communication with each other. In this case, we need the reassurance of God’s love towards us, and we need to remind ourselves of our love for Him and our desire to do our work His way. This helps us to be built up in Him, so the competitive pressure of those around us doesn’t have to influence us. In addition, we make a lifestyle of thankfulness and gratefulness for who God is.

Now godliness with contentment is great gain. 1Timothy 6:6

Fourth, seek contentment and ask the Lord to help you with discontentment. Be a truthful friend to yourself.  When you are feeling discontent, admit it. If you deny those feelings, you will be drawn to what is familiar and what gives you the fictitious sense of satisfaction and contentment. The humdrum of life can easily take us to a place of being discontent. For some, this leads to competition because that is where they get their validation and satisfaction. Contrary to our usual tendencies, discontentment can actually lead us to an untapped area in our lives that can be explored! Maybe challenge yourself to learn something new in life and enjoy it!

Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. 1Corinthians 9:24-25

Fifth point is that Paul’s writing in the above scriptures stresses the fact that the spiritual life is a marathon. We have to persevere and be committed for the long haul to win in this race. This race is not against others. The race is against sin, our own fleshly proclivities, and spiritual battles waged against God’s people. His intent was not to state that we are in competition with anyone else to make it to heaven or to have God’s approval. Heaven is not experiencing scarcity, and God would be pleased if every human being on the face of the earth was willing to run the spiritual race and finish it faithfully. 

The Lord is a God of abundance, and He knows how to bless His children in His way and in His timing. He promises inheritance and blessings to those who are meek in heart. Those who compete may get what they crave, but they will remain carnal and will inhibit developing the fruit of the Spirit, which is the true fruitfulness! 

Furthermore, when we let go of competition, we develop more satisfying relationships with our spouses, co-workers, co-laborers in ministry, and friends. Solid relationships develop where there is no comparison or feeling threatened by each other. Instead, those healthy relationships develop where there is mutual respect, trust, love, and desiring God’s best for each other. This is not an easy area to conquer. However, with the Lord’s help through honesty and consistency, we can overcome and establish our identity in Christ at a much deeper level!