DAY #30 - 'A Woman of Faith' Devotional
Verse: ''I discipline my body and bring it under strict control, so that after preaching to others, I myself will not be disqualified.'' 1 Corinthians 9:27 HCSB
NIV - ''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.''
NKJV - ''But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.''
KJV - ''But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.''
NLT - ''I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.''
MSG - ''I don't know about you, but I'm running hard for the finish line. I'm giving it everything I've got. No sloppy living for me! I'm staying alert and in top condition. I'm not going to get caught napping, telling everyone else all about it and then missing out myself.'' (v. 26-27)
**Editor's Note: Reading different translations is always good. One thing about having the Bible online, you can do that quickly and easily. I usually use http://www.biblegateway.com for my Online Bible needs. A friend was just mentioning today that since their move, they have found a lot of Bibles. She/He didn't know they had that many. They were giving thanks that we live in a free country where we can read our Bible and not worry about being persecuted or killed because of it. Some people around the world cannot even have a Bible at their home, and these people had more than that. The BIBLE is a very important book, and should be treated that way. It is HISTORY... Historical NON-Fiction and it is the ONLY book that is alive. We are truly blessed to be able to get our hands on several different translations of the Word of God. Which one is right? Which one is the correct wording or understanding? Read in the translation that you desire, and seek the Lord to give you the true understanding and wisdom regarding His word. **
We need to discipline ourselves as diciples of Christ, so that our words, thoughts and deeds reflect the way we are sharing God's love and the truth of His Word with others. I love the Message Version "I don't know about you, but I'm running hard for the finish line. I'm giving it everything I've got. No sloppy living for me! I'm staying alert and in top condition. I'm not going to get caught napping, telling everyone else all about it and then missing out myself.'' We need to discipline ourselves for us #1, as we need to make sure that we are not missing out ourselves, yet we also need to do it as an example to those around us. We need to basically 'practice what we preach'. As this translation says, we need to 'stay alert and in top condition'. In the case of an athlete, they are alert and train to be in top condition when they compete in or play their sport. They can receive a lot of harmful injury if they didn't train properly before their sporting event. In the case of a team sport, they not only affect themselves, but they affect those others on the team with them. Same as Christianity, we are a 'body', and each of us plays a special part. If one person hurts, we all hurt.
To be disciplined, according to dictionary.com is;
–verb (used with object)
10. to train by instruction and exercise; drill.
11. to bring to a state of order and obedience by training and control.
12. to punish or penalize in order to train and control; correct; chastise.
We need to allow ourselves to be controlled by God, we are no longer subject to being controlled by men around us, or by ourselves. (We still do have the free-will to choose this, yet the Father is the one who created us, and knows us best.) We need to be obedient to what the Father has said in his Word (or to us directly or indirectly through the prophetic). We are also disciplined by the Father (definition #12 above) in order to train, control, correct or chastise us to becoming the M.E. (Maximum Effectiveness) that He has called us to be.
It is a learning process, and yes, you will mess up. I'm with you here... I am not preaching to the crowd, and ignoring what I say. I am in this struggle along with you. We need to discipline ourselves in reading His Word, meditating on it, praying at all times, trusting Him at all times, living in Faith and not by sight, humble ourselves, act justly, love mercy, walk humbly with Him, etc... the Scriptures themselves tell us how we should behave, how we should act. I have just named some of them. By obedience and listening to God, we are benefitted... but by disobedience and going ahead on our own strength, we are going to suffer the consequences of our decisions.
God wants us to be disciplined, diligent and mature and wants us to seek Him first in all things. (''But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.''Matthew 6:33) If we have faith and diligently seek Him, He will reward us. It's a promise in His Word; ''But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.'' Hebrews 11:6 NKJV
The responsiblity lays on our shoulders, yet the strength and power comes from Him, and we will be blessed for our disciplined life.
Remember (as in the picture above) Discipline is the bridge between your goals and your achievements!
Be Blessed and Be a Blessing!