Acts 18:6 – And when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook his raiment, and said unto them, Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean: from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles.
I have always been a very competitive person. The bottom line is, I love to win. When I played softball, I played to win. When I bowled, I bowled to win. When I golfed, I golfed to win. When I competed in some arena of martial arts, I competed to win. Now I’m 70 years old, and though some of the more vigorous competitions in my life are behind me, I still play to win.
But over a lifetime of competition, I learned some very valuable lessons. My greatest opponent in competition of any kind is ME. My greatest enemy is Satan. And if Satan can cause me to think that someone else is my enemy, he can use that to cause me to hurt other people. You see, I clearly know how competitive I am. I fully realize I play to win. And with all these lessons I have learned, I have also learned that if I direct my time, my talent, and my treasure to the right projects and in the right manner, I use my competitive drive, not to hurt anyone, but to motivate myself in the things that serve to inspire myself and those with whom I work and whom I serve.
But as competitive as I am, and I know some of my readers are very competitive as well, I am also a people person. I love to be around good people. I love to help people. I love to point people in a direction that enables them to rise to their highest possible potential. Because of that, it is easy for me to develop connections with people. But even when I am operating at my highest possible level, I sometimes discover that someone has entered the picture who truly doesn’t want to be helped, or someone who, in reality, wants to damage the work the Lord is doing through my life. Don’t think that I am thinking too highly of myself. Jesus died for you, too. That makes you a very precious possession of the King of kings. Value yourself, for you can truly only value others to the degree you value yourself. Remember, you are to love your neighbor AS yourself. For that reason, it is imperative that the believer learns to be led by Holy Spirit, clearly directed in his steps and guided in his choices. As never before in the history of the church, the believer needs to know when to walk away, when to shake off the dust from his feet, or when to press in to minister to someone.
Manna for Today – Acts 18:1-17; Matthew 10:14; Mark 6:11; Luke 9:5; Luke 10:11; 2 Timothy 2:22; Acts 13:51