Monday, February 4, 2019

Trophies Won vs Souls Won

Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold, whose height was sixty cubits and its width six cubits. He set it up in the plain of Dura, in the province of Babylon.  And King Nebuchadnezzar sent word to gather together the satraps, the administrators, the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the judges, the magistrates, and all the officials of the provinces, to come to the dedication of the image which King Nebuchadnezzar had set up. So the satraps, the administrators, the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the judges, the magistrates, and all the officials of the provinces gathered together for the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up; and they stood before the image that Nebuchadnezzar had set up.  Then a herald cried aloud: “To you it is commanded, O peoples, nations, and languages,  that at the time you hear the sound of the horn, flute, harp, lyre, and psaltery, in symphony with all kinds of music, you shall fall down and worship the gold image that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up; and whoever does not fall down and worship shall be cast immediately into the midst of a burning fiery furnace.” (Daniel 3:1-6)
Super Bowl is indeed a world event! People who don't normally watch football throw a party. If you are like our family, even if your team is not playing, you put on your  own team's gear and represent as you watch and eat your favorite "football foods" and even rate commercials!

Yet the actual participants, the players and coaches, seek one thing for the most part . . . The Lombardi Trophy! One player and coach in particular seek the record number of Lombardis!

Like the players in the big game, people throughout HIStory have sought the rewards, the awards, the money, the fame and yes, the worship! Nebuchadnezzar was such a man. As he went throughout conquering, he captured and enslaved the Jewish people, forcing them to worship his image. As the story goes, Daniel's friends chose not to do so and were punished in a fiery furnace, only to be protected by the Lord!

What about you and me? Are we caught up in the trophies won in life or the souls won? Is the worldly prize our goal or is it Kingdom goals for which we are striving? I recall athletes using the platform of success to bring honor to God and reflect the praise to Him. Yet many chase the trophy, the glory, and money for themselves. Are we any better?

How are we using our successes to honor the Lord and draw others to Him?  At work, at school, on the field, on the court . . .  Are we using influence to win awards for ourselves or souls for Christ? Life is real, not practice!

At the end of the big game, there is confetti, hugs, congratulations, cheers, interviews, tears, and eventually a parade! What will the celebration be like in heaven for you and me?

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