When athletes train for endurance, they don’t just go until they start to feel tired. They keep on going, pushing themselves to get stronger. They train their bodies to endure.
Endurance doesn’t mean much of anything if we’re not under pressure. It’s not built on the mountaintop, but in the valleys—in the low points of our lives. It’s easy to keep going when you have it all together. It’s another to press on when things are difficult.
2 Corinthians 5:10 says, “For we must all stand before Christ to be judged. We will each receive whatever we deserve for the good or evil we have done in this earthly body.” Salvation is a gift; it’s not dependent on what we do. Jesus forgives all who come to Him by faith. But that’s not where our journey has to end. If we stop at forgiveness and never do anything else with our lives, we miss the opportunity to receive amazing rewards in eternity.
In Matthew 24, Jesus talks about the time when He will come back to Earth. Matthew 24:42 -44 says, “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming. Understand this: If a homeowner knew exactly when a burglar was coming, he would keep watch and not permit his house to be broken into. You also must be ready all the time, for the Son of Man will come when least expected.” We don’t want to become complacent and be caught off guard when Jesus returns. In games like basketball, the players know that eventually, the final buzzer will sound and the game will end.
Jesus tells us that there will be a final buzzer—when we give an account for what we did on Earth, what will we tell Him about the opportunities He gave us? God has entrusted each of us with certain abilities, resources, talents, and opportunities to use for building up His Kingdom on Earth while we wait for Jesus’ return. Don’t sit and watch the time tick away. Pick up your ball and try and score some points for your team while you have the opportunity.
Jesus is coming back, so get ready. Stay alert. Build your endurance so you have the strength to play through the whole game and put some points on the scoreboard. We are never guaranteed tomorrow, so do everything you can today to grow the Kingdom of God.