Finishing Well

22″And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. 23I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. 24However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace. Acts 20-22-24

Paul is speaking with his friends. He recounts his life. He is aware that the end is nearing and he is taking stock. He also knows that hardships are ahead.

No easy retirement here. No beach house in a retirement community with shuffleboard, bingo, and early-bird specials. His goal and desire was not to make it to the time where he could kick back and take it easy. He had a focused desire to finish the race and complete the task.

I get caught up in the day to day. I get caught up working in my life instead of on my life. I find myself working in the kingdom but not on the kingdom. Life doesn’t become about finishing, it becomes about getting through the day. Paul challenges me to a new focus.

  1. Finish the race. How many things have I started? How many things have I completed? What surprises and frustrates me is the number of people who say they will do something (or maybe even begin to do something) and never finish. I’m not running the race in this life just to stop running at the next water stop. I want to run all the way. I want to finish.
  2. Complete the task. It is not about just finishing, just “getting through” life. That can be done fairly easy. It is about completing the task. What task? Living a life that tells of the grace of God. We wonder all the time “what is God’s will for my life?” We often ask it from the perspective of “what do you want me to do? Where should I work? Who should I marry? What about my major?” Maybe our life should be seen through the lens of completing the task of living a life that tells of God’s grace. Maybe everything else falls under that.

God, I am once again challenged to live life as if it matters little to me and much to you. May I make choices today that speak of your grace. Help me to pace myself so that I finish well. All so that at the end of the day and the end of my life, you and your grace may be the only thing that is seen. Be more famous.

[tags] journal, life, God’s-will, Acts, Bible, God[/tags]

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