SOAP stands for Scripture, Observation, Application and Prayer. Today’s journal comes from reading 2 Timothy 4.
“In the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.” –2 Timothy 4:8
Paul was an old man who could confidently look to his eternal future because he had faithfully served throughout his life.
There was a victor’s crown awaiting him–the crown of righteousness! The crown here never refers to a king’s crown (authority) but refers to an award given for victory in athletics (the Olympics) or in war for public or distinguished service.
This crown will be awarded–paid or re-paid–by the Lord. Imagine that day when “each man’s praise will come to him from God.” (1 Corinthians 4:5)
This crown is for those who love and anticipate the 2nd coming of Jesus.
Although no one knows when their final day will be, I feel I’m entering the fourth quarter of my life. Two things that must be preeminent in my mind:
1) Finish my course.
2) Fix my hope on Jesus’ 2nd coming.
There are other legitimate concerns in life, but these must be priority.
Father, you’ve given me one life here on earth; one chance, one opportunity to live for You. I sincerely desire to one day say, “I finished my course…in the future is laid up for me…” I look forward to the awards ceremony You will hold. And yet, Lord, I fear that on that day I will not be able to say that I finished my course–that there was still work left for me that I did not complete.
Father, help me to redeem my time; to use my life for You. Help me to know my course. I pray that I will play my part in accomplishing the Great Commission. There is so much to do and so many opportunities for service. Lead me each day so that I might make true PROGRESS in the faith.
I ask this in Jesus’ Name and for your glory! Amen.