I love watching the Olympics every four years. It’s not just the competition that draws me, it’s the desire of these people to get better. They dedicate so much of their life to be the best they can be. I remember watching Michael Phelps compete during several Olympic Games. We cheered when he broke the world record and won gold. We cheered again when he broke his own world record. Did you know he broke his own world record seven times? That’s insane to me! He kept pushing himself to get better all the time. When asked about it, he said, “Yesterday doesn’t matter. It’s about who can get their hand on the wall first today.” That attitude pushed him to not settle.
In the book of Acts, we read about a preacher named Apollos. Chapter 18 says he was making a name for himself because he was passionate for Jesus and was powerful in the Scriptures. He was an educated and cultured person who was winning many to the Lord. When a couple of believers in Ephesus heard him preach, they noticed he was only preaching about the baptism of John and not of the Holy Spirit as well. They took him aside privately to discuss it with him. Instead of letting his pride get in the way, he listened and learned so he could grow. His preaching and life became even more powerful. It even says that after that he became a tremendous help to the believers and caused them to grow in grace. His desire to grow in the Lord and learn more about Scripture caused him to be a force to be reckoned with in the Early Church.
Even Paul, who wrote most of the New Testament wanted to grow and know Christ more fully. In Philippians 3:12 he wrote, “I admit that I haven’t yet acquired the absolute fullness that I’m pursuing, but I run with passion into his abundance so that I may reach the purpose for which Christ Jesus laid hold of me to make me his own” (TPT). If Paul was on a constant journey of growth and pursuit of trying to get closer to Jesus, so should we. When we compare ourselves to others, we can get prideful and complacent. However, when we compare ourselves to Jesus, we realize we still have growth opportunities ahead of us. The Christian life is one of constant growth and pursuing Jesus. You will always have the opportunity to get a little bit better and little bit closer to Jesus.
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