Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Fearful (08/23/07)
TITLE: WORK IT OUT WITH FEARFULNESS!
By Michael McBuba
LEAVE COMMENT ON ARTICLE
SEND A PRIVATE COMMENT
ADD TO MY FAVORITES
But why is this so? I believe the answer lies in the fact that any assignment for which you are least prepared for should naturally give you the shivers! And any venture for which you have never previously embarked upon should normally stir up consternation and agitation in your heart — except if there is nothing worthwhile at stake; and unless you have deliberately set up yourself for a fatal fall!
Can you for just a moment envision with me the fate of an athlete who goes into competition without adequate training under a qualified coach? And can you also imagine the waterloo that awaits that athlete who would not follow the golden rules and regulations of best sportsmanship practices?
Furthermore, can you imagine a candidate who is attempting any particular examination for the very time who would not normally approach the task with a level of trepidation and circumspection, since he has no intention to fail, knowing that in the event where he should fail, the consequences might be too traumatic and devastating to absorb?
Again, can you envision with me a young couple standing before a priest to be joined together in holy wedlock who would not normally approach the altar with at least, a certain amount of reverence and veneration, having the prior understanding that the vows about to be administered on them are not for the cowardly at heart but for those with a strong resolve to keep the marital vows for life?
This was exactly what Jesus meant when He posed the following query in Luke 14:28, “For which of you, intending to build a tower, sits not down first, and counts the cost, whether he has sufficient to finish it? Lest haply, after he laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish.”
It is my considered opinion that a lot of believers may miss out mainly because we no longer live with the consciousness of Finishing Well, and because aimlessness and apathy have set in on us. As strongly indicting as it may sound, I believe that most of us have forgotten that our God is Fearful and Awesome, and that it is a fearful thing to fall into His hands, (Hebrews 10:31)!
In 1 Corinthians 9:25, Paul reminds us that, “…every man that strives for the mastery is temperate in all things…” in order to “…obtain a corruptible crown…” If athletes work so hard to win corruptible crowns, how much more fearfulness and carefulness should we as believers exercise in order not to miss out of the Heavenly Race for which “…so great a cloud of witnesses…” have gathered to watch and cheer us on, (Hebrews 12:1)?
Finally, in Philippians 2:11b, Paul urges us to, “…work out our own salvation with fear and trembling.” The term “work out” is both a mathematical and an athletic term. In both contexts, a workout exercise of sort is implied.
In a mathematical examination, the examiner is not only interested in your getting the correct answers, he is even much more interested in how you arrive at your answers. Christianity is much the same. It is first of all an in-work by the Holy Spirit. But it doesn’t end there. We are expected to go further to work it out, and we are instructed to do so with fearfulness and trembling because our salvation cost God the life of His Only Begotten Son.
No wonder that when I first started working on the topic for this essay, the foremost thought that came to my mind was to steer clear, exit the website, and simply face my own very familiar terrain. I had thought within myself, “Why trespass where even the eagles would dare not?” But then, there was this inner conviction—the silent nudge— that convinced me that I could and should give the project my very best effort, and here we are!
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
Accept Jesus as Your Lord and Savior Right Now - CLICK HERE
JOIN US at FaithWriters for Free. Grow as a Writer and Spread the Gospel.