Unpack This...for Olympic Fans


What Olympians Do

As sports fans, we love watching the Olympics. All the top athletes from around the world represent their country and compete in 339 events in 33 sports during a short time frame.

Although the most memorable moments oftentimes take place in a tight competition or a close finish, the goal of the very best athletes is not only to win, but by the largest margin possible and dominate their opponents as much as they can.

In other words, elite athletes do the following:

• Set themselves apart.

• Distance themselves from the competition.

• Distinguish themselves.

• Separate themselves.

That’s what gold medal winners do and they stand out while the world is watching.

As followers of Jesus, there’s an encouraging parallel to our own lives. First off, there’s a competition going on for our soul. But, when we receive grace and salvation by faith through Jesus, we’re set apart. We were called out of darkness into God's wonderful light, as it says in 1 Peter 2:9.

We still face the competition of evil as Satan and some people try to take us down. However, 1 Thessalonians 5:22 and Proverbs 13:20 give us important challenges to distance ourselves so we avoid getting caught or trapped.

Similar to the Olympians, we also want to distinguish ourselves. In 1 Peter 1:13-16, we're called to have holy lives that are different and recognized as such.

Lastly, in any sport that involves a race, winners must separate themselves instead of staying back. As believers, we don’t want to be held back by being unequally yoked with unbelievers, and 2 Corinthians 6:17 warns us of this.

Today, let’s be like gold medal winners and stand out while the world is watching - living holy lives set apart and distinguished. Let's distance ourselves and separate ourselves from anything or anyone that prevents us from thriving on the race that’s set before us.

I’m Bryce Johnson and you can UNPACK that!

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank You for making me holy because of Jesus. I pray that I’ll live a holy life as I follow You during the race that’s set before me. Please show me the ways I need to separate myself from anything or anyone that’s holding me back. I desire to live a distinguished life pleasing to You. Thank You for calling me out of darkness into marvelous light. In Jesus’ name, I pray, Amen.