Sports Spectrum Daily Devotional: Tuesday, December 17

“Now this is eternal life: that they know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent. I have brought You glory on earth by finishing the work You gave me to do.” — John 17:3-4

Number 23

Does Michael Jordan still pop in your mind when you see 23? Since rocking that number through the 90s, countless players have worn it in hopes that their greatness would reach Jordan’s elite status. LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Draymond Green, Marcus Camby and Ron Artest are just a few of the guys who’ve worn that legendary number.

Copying a player’s number or emulating their game can be harmless and even helpful in sports, but copying or comparing in our spiritual life can be quite dangerous. 

Jesus spoke the words in John 17:3-4 to the Father before He went to the cross. We know Jesus stepped down from Heaven to pay the price for our sins and reconnect us back to a holy God. But before He accomplished the ultimate work He came to do, He brought glory to the Father by “finishing the work.”

What was the work He did before going to the cross? It is written that Jesus: 

  • had compassion on others (Matthew 9:36) 
  • trained disciples (John 17:6)
  • met with sinners (Matt 9:10) 
  • performed many miracles (Matthew 8:26) 

There could be more added, but those are a few examples of the work the Father gave to Jesus. But what He was given is not the point. The point is that Jesus did what the Father told Him. He was obedient.

What is the work that the Father has given to you? If you’re not sure, ask Him! If you still don’t know, a good place to start would be getting involved in Jesus’ work:

  • Have a heart full of compassion for others. 
  • Find a disciple to train and send out. 
  • Meet with the outcasts and overlooked. 
  • Allow God’s power to work through you to change a life. 

Are you stuck trying to copy other athletes, coaches, commentators or administrators? In the end, comparing yourself to everything everyone else accomplished is a waste of time. Do the work the Father has given you. And then you will hear our Master say, “Well done, good and faithful servant!” (Matthew 25:23).

Chad Simpson

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