1 Corinthians 9:19-27–Even though I am a free man with no master, I have become a slave to all people to bring many to Christ. When I was with the Jews, I lived like a Jew to bring the Jews to Christ. When I was with those who follow the Jewish law, I too lived under that law. Even though I am not subject to the law, I did this so I could bring to Christ those who are under the law. When I am with the Gentiles who do not follow the Jewish law, I too live apart from that law so I can bring them to Christ. But I do not ignore the law of God; I obey the law of Christ.
When I am with those who are weak, I share their weakness, for I want to bring the weak to Christ. Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some. I do everything to spread the Good News and share in its blessings.
Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. 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.
Paul took the responsibility he’d been given seriously. He knew that what he was called to do wasn’t for nothing. Everything he said and did had an impact on those who were watching him, so he wanted to make sure he did whatever was possible to make that impact one of eternal significance.
Those of us in the Church have been given a purpose: to build the Kingdom of God. We should want more and more people to experience what new life in Christ is all about!
In Matthew 7:20, Jesus said, “…just as you can identify a tree by its fruit, so you can identify people by their actions.” The fruit in your life has the ability to point people to what you’re rooted in. When they see what you do, they’ll know what you’re about. And if you make sure that the root source of your life is God, people will notice.
The life we’re living right now on Earth is so short compared to all of eternity. But what we do now affects us then. Jesus said in Matthew 6 to store up our treasures in heaven, not on Earth. When we live our lives with the purpose of introducing people to God and seeing them changed forever, we are storing up heavenly treasures.
What really matters in eternity is that we have done everything God had planned for us while we were here. Use every gift, every resource, and every opportunity God gives you to build up His Kingdom.