Verses of the Day — 1 Corinthians 9:24-27

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Hey guys!

Today’s verses read, “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.”

On June 28th, 1991, in Las Vegas, Colorado viewers witnessed the greatest show of strength and endurance many of them have probably still ever seen. On this day, “Iron” Mike Tyson and Donovan “Razor” Ruddock faced each other in a well-anticipated rematch. In the previous match, Mike Tyson pummeled Donovan so hard that the referee finally had to call the match. However, in this new match, Ruddock was not going to take that. Even though he lost, he endured until the end and the match didn’t have to be called. They fought out all 12 rounds and Mike Tyson only won based on the judges’ decision. So, what’s so interesting about this match? Well, in the third round, Ruddock was actually grounded with a broken jaw. Now, I know some of y’all might be thinking, “But I thought they fought all 12 rounds?” Well, that’s exactly right! And THAT’S what’s so interesting about this match. Donovan “Razor” Ruddock suffered a broken jaw in the third round of the match, but he still endured to the end and actually finished stronger than he started. This is an awesome show of staying power, but in the church these days, this kind of endurance is rarely seen. One of the problems with the church today is that we quit on God. And we quit on God because we’re not using the right weapons. We have to stop using physical weapons and start using spiritual weapons because the Bible says in 2 Corinthians 10:4, “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds”

In our text, we can see that there is a clear difference between us and unbelievers. The unbelievers are vying for a crown that’s going to wither away and die. Theirs won’t last. But we as Christians are striving for a crown that will last forever. Isn’t that a blessing? We don’t have to waste our time trying to get something that won’t last. We get to spend our time and energy on something that will last. And that’s not a waste. But it only works out this way if we actually make our goal the heavenly crown. A lot of Christians today have the wrong goals. They’re trying to please man and do things for man’s glory and leaving God by the wayside. But God tells us in His word that this is not right. The Bible says that our focus should be on things above and not on worldly things (Colossians 3:2). Listen to that again. Our focus should be on things above and not on worldly things. Focus. The definition of focus is a main purpose or interest. Striving towards God has to be our purpose! We have to be interested in God and not interested in the world. Once we get to that point, we can begin growing in Christ.

~Xena Callaham

Do better. Think better. Be better.

Verses of the Day — Colossians 1:13-14

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Hey guys!

Today’s verses read, “For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”

Colossians is a great place to start if you are seeking to learn more about who God is and what that means in terms of who we are. In this chapter, Paul is thanking God for the people in the church of Colossae because of their love and hope. He tells them that he has never stopped praying for them. He then takes the time to describe the Son and talks about how the people are now reconciled for God’s purpose. Paul ends by talking about his own labor’s in the church.

I love these two verses because they show how powerful God is. Let’s talk about the words “dominion of darkness”. That’s powerful. In this instance, dominion is used to mean “an often oppressive force”. This means that God saving us from this is not something to be taken lightly. The Bible says that we were slaves to sin, which is the darkness that the verse speaks of (Romans 6:20). The fact that God can save us from that shows His great power and gives us reassurance that His dominion is good and greater than any other. This part of the verse also speaks to the light that God is and that we must shine out from within ourselves. Because God’s light is so powerful, it was able to defeat the darkness. We also have that light because we are adopted children of God. This means that we should not be afraid of any darkness or sin because God has already given us the ability to conquer it.

The verse says that God rescued us and brought us to a new place in the kingdom of His son. This shows His care for us. The word “rescue” has connotations of grace, love, and care all of which God has for us. He loved us enough to rescue us and bring us under the wing of His son in whom we have redemption. Rescuing someone from death…if that’s not love, I don’t know what is! 

Redemption is another important word in this text. It indicates a release from not only the doom of sin, but also the guilt of sin. With God’s forgiveness, we have no need to feel guilty from the bad things we have done. His forgiveness is complete, so we can simply move on and be better people. In our world today, complete redemption is rare if not impossible to find. This speaks to the perfection of God. He is not like humans.

So, how can we use these two verses in our daily lives? We just have to remember that God rescued us and that in His son we have complete liberation from the guilt and doom of sin. If we keep those two things in mind, we will have the peace that God is always willing to give us, if we just tap into it. Not only will we have peace, but we will become better people, because when you don’t have guilt weighing you down, you are free to start doing the right thing. I hope this helps all of us become better Christians.

~Xena Callaham

Do better. Think better. Be better.