1 Corinthians 9:27
But [like a boxer] I buffet my body [handle it roughly, discipline it by hardships] and subdue it, for fear that after proclaiming to others the Gospel and things pertaining to it, I myself should become unfit [not stand the test, be unapproved and rejected as a counterfeit]. (AMP)
So kill (deaden, [a]deprive of power) the evil desire lurking in your members [those animal impulses and all that is earthly in you that is employed in sin]: sexual vice, impurity, sensual appetites, unholy desires, and all greed and covetousness, for that is idolatry (the defying of self and other created things instead of God). (AMP)
As with any sport, one does not just start playing and expect to be perfect or have a sense of mastery. Yes, some may have a God-given talent or gift but others must condition for it. A marathon runner cannot just wake up the morning of the marathon and expect to be the winner. It may indeed be possible, but I have never heard of it being done. I have never heard of a famous NBA player who woke up having never played basketball saying, “I am going to be drafted today.” It takes time, skill and a drive to better yourself and a conditioning process. That can also be said about the Christian Race.
Many people believe that as soon as they give the preacher their hand and God their heart that everything will change and they will not have any issues at all. This is not the case. There is a growing process that we all must go through. As the text says we have to go through some hardships to be conditioned in the Christian lifestyle. We have to understand that we will go through some things but we have to be strong enough to withstand temptation. We cannot give in to what our flesh wants to do, but we have to stand strong. We must do the work of Him who has sent us. We must be like Jesus and resist the whiles of the devil. All the things of the world, we should turn our backs to them. The devil knows how to get to us and he knows where we are weak, that is why we must surround ourselves with people who will hold us accountable and will aid in our conditioning.
Conditioning is not an overnight process but something that takes time. We must be willing to give up sin i.e. “sexual vice, impurity, sensual appetites, unholy desires, and all greed and covetousness, for that is idolatry (the deifying of self and other created things instead of God).” Although we may slip and fall, we must remember to get back up and to try again with more determination. Had Kobe, Magic, Michael etc., just given up at the first failed attempt, where would the NBA be, let alone them? Where would we be in our Christian race without our conditioning? We have to continue to set goals for ourselves and push ourselves to reach those goals. With God on our side, our possibilities are truly endless. Don’t just consider the race, but remember the conditioning.
-Min. Andre’ D. Waller
Strong and Manly Talent Soaring
God Is With Me His Strength Outpouring
Some *trust* in chariots, and some in horses;
But we will remember the name of the LORD our God. -Psalm 20:7