When a winning athlete is granted a lap of honour, it is a most joyous occasion. As he or she runs smiling and waving around the arena, proudly holding their country’s flag, their victory is celebrated by many as the athlete has brought glory to their country.
Jesus Christ was victorious at the cross. He paid the complete penalty for our sins and guaranteed eternal salvation for all who desire it, (Romans 6:23, John 3:16). However, Jesus Christ didn’t hang about for his victory lap. Instead, he headed off to build us all a mansion in Heaven (John 14: 1-4). In his absence, he has asked us to do the victory lap for him.
Thus as Christians, our lives should reflect the joyful athlete running the victory lap. When we run around the ‘Arena of Life’ facing its tests and trials, we should do it with the full knowledge that the race has already been won. That no matter how we succeed or fail, our eternal salvation is guaranteed and secured because of Christ’s victorious work on the cross. ‘For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works,lest anyone should boast’. Ephesians 2: 8-9:
We should run proud and carefree and hold high the flag of Christ for everyone to see. When the crowd see our joyful life and the flag we are holding (especially undergoing adversity), they will understand whom the victory belongs. Happiness is contagious and people want to celebrate with a winner. A joyous, relaxed, grace-filled life is a beacon to those living in darkness.
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:16