Throwback Thursday: Keep Your Eyes on the Prize!

fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:2 NASB).

I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:14) NASB)

 The above two verses remind us to keep our eyes and attention fixed on the prize: which is Jesus! When we shift our gaze from Jesus to the things around us, we lose strength, energy, and focus. The example below is used a lot in sermons and devotionals to demonstrate this concept. It is an oldie but a goodie. The following was published on The End Time in July 2010.

Florence Chadwick was a young woman in 1952 but had already swum the English Channel, both ways, and broke records doing it. That morning in 1952 she stood on the shores of California with intent to swim the 26 miles to Catalina Island. It was foggy. She was used to fog, rough water, and cold, having swum in these conditions since when was 11 years old so she was prepared for any conditions that may beset her on the long swim. It was so foggy that Florence could not see the support boats motoring around her to scare away the sharks. However after 15 hours of rough water stroke after stroke, she felt like she wasn’t getting anywhere. Despite encouragement from her mother and others in the support boat next to her, Florence wearied and asked to be taken out of the water. She soon discovered that she was half a mile from her goal.

Above, the Lubec Maine shoreline. There is lighthouse in this photo. Can you see it? 
[Photo by EPrata]

At a news conference the next day Florence said, “All I could see was the fog.…I think if I could have seen the shore, I would have made it.”

Florence tried again two months later. This time, she made it because she said that she kept a mental image of the shoreline in her mind while she swam.

This is the same scene as above after the fog rolled away. [Photo by EPrata]

Prophecy is not meant to BE the fog. It is knowable, profitable, and given to us for all education. It is a light to keep in our heart as to the immutable existence of God, His eternal promises, and the goal for every believer, to reach the eternal Lighthouse. Jesus meant for prophecy and His promises to the believer to be the mental image for us to hold dear as to the goal. Do not give up half a mile from the finish line! He is near, He is coming. Do not wander, drift, be swept away by currents taking you far from the goal. May every stroke of your swim toward eternity be as vigorous as the one before. Pray for that vigor. The Holy Spirit is there to help us:  “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;” (John 14:16)

If you knew that the Rapture was tomorrow would it change your decision not to study the Bible today? Not to pray? Not to help someone? If you knew it was next week, or next year, how differently would you act as a Christian? You’re tired. We are all tired. The wages of sin splash up on us, and sometimes splash into us. It is wearying holding firm against the current. But keep the goal in mind! Some fine morning,t eh call will come, and the fog will lift and we shall see Him clearly, in blazing glory and light!

What a day that will be!

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