The Olympics have been going on for the last week or so…and we have seen some pretty amazing things happen. From Phelps winning multiple gold medals (AGAIN), underdog stories, team wins to solo victories. The Olympics have been quite the spectacle.
When I’m watching these world class athletes compete - whether they win or lose…I just can’t stop thinking about how hard they have all trained for this one moment. And how long they’ve been training that hard for…for most of them - it has been a life long journey. It’s so inspiring! I love seeing an athlete stand on that podium with tears in their eyes because they realize how far they’ve come. I also love seeing another athlete have a look of determination on their face after a loss because you can just see the fire in their eyes. They are about to train for the next 4 years even harder than they did before.
In all of this - I become inspired…not just to train and become healthier physically. But to go ALL IN, in every aspect of my life. I want to “Go for Gold” not just in the gym…but in my job, in my relationships, in my commitments and even more so…in my spirituality / walk with God.
Thing is - with these athletes who win gold…like Phelps or Bolt…they don’t just win 1 gold medal and become satisfied…like…”Oh, I did it! I’m good now.” - no. They continue to train hard. They continue to strive for gold. That’s how it should be with everything that we do….ESPECIALLY with God.
Like when you aren’t a champion quite yet…or even when you are “championing” your walk with God..we should always push for more. When I was in a struggle - I worshipped God all the time. I looked to Him for everything. I was going on fasts, reading scripture - the whole 9 yards. Not that I’m distant now - but when people attain a little bit of comfort or success it becomes easy to get lazy with your walk. The same can happen when you’re in the struggle. Maybe you don’t listen to as much worship music, maybe you don’t read your Bible or have your quiet time with God like you used to….I know that sometimes I am surely guilty of these things.
So if you’re like me and you need a little “refocus” or a little bit of nudge in the right direction as we “Go for Gold” - here are a couple reminders of who we worship, why we worship Him, and how we worship/serve Him.
1. We Worship God
Although we are believers - it becomes very easy to worship false idols. Whether thats money, a job, a person, a relationship or a dream...When times are tough or even when they are easy - most humans are quick to become self-serving and self-reliant. Doing things only for ourselves and what we believe is the “right” thing to do for our lives. Let us always be in a place of worship. Let us never forget where we have come from, where we are going and/or what we are striving for. Whether you are on top of the world and crushing life or feel like you just can’t catch a break and are at your “rock bottom” - remember to never let your highs be too high or your lows be too low - because God is in control.
A man may have all the riches in the world but you can tell how rich he really is by how humble he is. Because a humble man knows that he is not in control. He is a thankful man. Having an attitude of gratitude is the only way to become happy. It’s not about being happy once you have…it’s about being happy with what you have. A man who is faithful with a little…will surely be faithful with a lot.
So let us always be in a position where we look to God - for everything comes from Him.
"Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power
and the glory and the majesty and the splendor,
for everything in heaven and earth is yours.
Yours, Lord, is the kingdom;
you are exalted as head over all.” - 1 Chronicles 29:11
2. Why We Worship / Serve God
Simply put - God is the creator of all. The king of kings. The lord of lords. The alpha and the omega.
God is our protector. He is our deliverer. He is our guide. He is our joy. Psalm 97:1-12
3. How We Worship
This is where we can really crush it! There are so many ways to worship God.
•Striving for excellence
•Stewarding what God has given you
•Reading your Bible
•Listening to worship music
Worship can come in so many different forms. But basically - it comes through how we live FOR God. It is said that we are called to spread the “Good News” aka the Gospel…and “if necessary…use words.” TRANSLATION: we can spread the good news of God, what He’s doing in our lives, what He’s done in our lives, how much we love Him and believe in Him…simply by the way we live.
Just like so many people are inspired to train hard in the gym when they see an amazing athlete. The world will be inspired to live for God when they see how hard you go! If people start running track after they see Usain Bolt run, play basketball after they see Lebron James win a championship or jump in the pool after they see Phelps hoisting another Gold medal…they will SURELY go all in for God if they see you loving yourself, loving people, worshipping Him and going ALL OUT in EVERY aspect of your life for God.
People will want what you have. Just like they want to be able to run fast or jump high….they will want the Holy Spirit.
Best part of this…there is NO ARRIVAL. It just get’s better and better and better and better. With God - we always know “The Best is Yet to Come!”
So no matter where you are in your walk…whether your just getting started, feel like a fallen champion, been doing it for years or are standing at the top of the podium….let’s always keep “training”…let’s always keep pushing. Let us always GO FOR GOLD!
By: Niko Ivanov