Thought on the Olympics, August 2016

Two weeks of often quite thrilling tv watching as the programmes showing the
various Olympic sports unrolled on the screen. Sometimes we did not even
understand what rules the competitors were having to follow or what they
were trying so hard to do, but one thing always stood out, each individual
was putting in the best effort and skill that possibly years of training had
fitted them for. You could see it in their faces. Not just the desire to win
but the total determination to win.
 Hopefully we who watched have all come away with that clear impression in
our minds. If you want to succeed at something, you need to put in real
effort. Try really hard, be serious about what you are doing.
Now this is not a new idea, I came across it in a letter written nearly 2000
years ago to Christians in the city of Philippi, by Paul the apostle.
Explaining how he was himself trying so hard to follow Jesus in his life he
used these words, " I press towards the mark for the prize of the high
calling of God in Jesus Christ". Clearly he had watched athletes competing
for the prizes in the games. Possibly those in training for the original
Olympic Games, but had seen that same utter determination to succeed. 
Do you think it strange that he was recommending that that same amount of
effort would be needed in being a disciple of Jesus in any age, our own