"He" who began a good work in me
LET US FINISH WELL
How can we finish well and be found faithful to the end? The book of Hebrews 12, in verses 1-2 it says :
Since we have such a huge crowd of men of faith watching us from the grandstands, let us strip off anything that slows us down or holds us back, and especially those sins that wrap themselves so tightly around our feet and trip us up; and let us run with patience the particular race that God has set before us.
Keep your eyes on Jesus, our leader and instructor. He was willing to die a shameful death on the cross because of the joy he knew would be his afterwards; and now he sits in the place of honor by the throne of God.
Four simple DO's and DON'T's to help us hold on and finish well.
1. Do not focus on the past (Philippians 3:13)
We cannot rest on our past victories, or sit on our laurels...neither should we keep regretting our past mistakes or failures.
We should move on, move forward and keep running the race till we get to the finish line.
•2. Don't tolerate the small compromises
When we allow small sin to creep into our lives, we give Satan a foothold. (Luke 16: 10-11)
The Jews were guilty of these four compromises:
- 1. Worship of God compromised (vv. 4-9).Things consecrated to God were removed to give room to Tobiah, an unbeliever, which defiled the whole sanctuary.
- 2. Tithes neglected (vv. 10-14).The believers stopped giving their tithes.
- 3. Sabbath Day neglected (vv. 15-22). They did business on the Sabbath.
- 4. Family life compromised (vv. 23-31).Children intermarried with non-Israelites.
3. Do practice spiritual disciplines. The spiritual disciplines we need to develop are:
- 1. Reading the Bible
- 2. Prayer
- 3. Meditation
- 4. Daily Devotion
- 5. Worship
- 6. Fellowship
4. Do develop an eternal perspective (Philippians 3:14)
- 1. We should fix our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of faith.
- 2. We should faithfully serve the Lord and not be discouraged, for God has a Book of Remembrance, where there is a distinction between those who finish well and those who don't.
In the course of doing these four steps to finishing well, it is helpful to be guided by the following questions which we can ask ourselves:
- 1. In what ways do I still live in the past? Are there ‘if onlys' (regrets) that you often think of? How should you deal with it?
- 2. Examine your past victories in your Christian walk. Have you been complacent in these areas? What is the danger facing you in midst of this complacency?
- 3. What small compromises do you often make? What can you do to avoid the same mistakes?
- 4. Which of the six spiritual disciplines mentioned earlier do you need to start developing or improve on?
- 5. Do you have an accountability partner? Why is having one important to be able to finish well?
While finishing well may be a struggle to some, let us always be guided by the Holy Spirit, who is our advocate, our helper.
He, who, began a good work in you shall be faithful to complete it.