Week 1, Day 1
1 Cor. 9:24
"24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26 Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize."
Have you ever trained for an event like a race or a game? What was that experience like? Many of the coaches I have had over the years have attempted to make practice harder than the performance. The idea is that the actual performance will feel easy if the practices are harder. That approach might not work in all situations, but there is a certain element of truth in it. I am not suggesting that our time with Jesus should be viewed as hard or difficult all the time, but sometimes it might be.
Taking time to have devotions can be hard and arduous sometimes. We might feel like skipping a day or two, but don't. Just as we train our bodies for a race we should train our minds and our spirits to strive for the race set before us. This means doing hard things and difficult things. Take a few minutes and write down some of the things that get in the way of spending time with God daily and then develop a plan to deal with such things.