I don’t know about you, but I’m not a sports fanatic. I don’t do sports or watch sports; I know hardly anything about them. The most sports I watch is an occasional football game and the Superbowl. One day I was thinking, though, about the work that goes into being a good athlete. It takes practice and precision, endurance and patience to get the game right and to keep going through the physical or mental pain and discomfort. Christians are sort of like athletes: not like the ones who are merely on a junior team, but like the Olympic athletes. They train for the biggest and hardest games of the year against other skilled athletes of the world. First let’s take into account the work it takes to qualify for those games. An Olympic athlete has to put in at least 6 hours of practice a day to be even barely acceptable for the competition. This means studying, preparing, seeking others’ advice, and doing the actual game many times.
When I think about it, Christians tend to think that an hour a day is a long time to be spent as a devotion to God in prayer and searching His Word. We think that an hour a day must be enough time with God to prepare us for the spiritual competition in which we engage every day. If every Christian put in 6 hours of prayer and searching the word every day, then we would be even more prepared to face the battle against sin and temptation. An athlete would never be able to enter the Olympics if he or she only entered 15 minutes of practice a day. Thank God that His mercy fights for us when we are not prepared to! There is no way that we can carefully take care of the responsibilities that God has given us and pray and read the Bible for 6 hours of our day. Only by the grace of God can we conquer the day.