Do not allow anything to turn you aside from the path of self-denial. Of those who in ancient times engaged in contests of physical strength, we read, “Every man that striveth in the games exerciseth self-control in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible” (1 Corinthians 9:25, A.S.V.). As we engage in the great struggle, let us think of what we shall lose if we fail. We shall lose the eternal life purchased for us by the blood of the Son of God. Shall we, then, grudge the toil of eternal vigilance? If we do all in our power to resist evil and surmount obstacles, we shall gain the victory. Vigor will reward the efforts made to press toward the prize of our high calling in Christ.
Worldly attractions will be presented to draw the attention from the Lord Jesus; but laying aside every weight and the sin that so easily besets, we are to press forward, showing to the world, to angels, and to men that the hope of seeing the face of God is worth all the efforts and the sacrifices that the attainment of the hope demands. . . . “I count not myself yet to have laid hold: but one thing I do, forgetting the things which are behind, and stretching forward to the things which are before, I press on toward the goal unto the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13, 14, A.S.V.).
“One thing I do.” Paul allowed nothing to divert him from the one great purpose of his life. . . . In the busy activities of life, he never lost sight of his one great purpose–to press on toward the prize of his high calling. . . .
Let the great purposes that constrained Paul to press forward in the face of hardship and difficulty lead you to consecrate yourselves wholly to God’s service. Whatever your hands find to do, do it with your might. Make your work pleasant with songs of praise. If you would have a clean record in the books of heaven, never fret or scold. Let your daily prayer be: “Lord, help me to do my best. Teach me how to do better work. Give me energy and cheerfulness. Help me to bring into my service the loving ministry of the Saviour.”
– This Day With God, pg. 374