Psalm 84: 5-6a Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage. As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs;
Have you noticed the incredible focus on celebrity? Ask most kids what their greatest dream is, and it is likely to become famous. Perhaps they can become an acclaimed pop singer, a rap sensation, or the next LeBron James. So many want to be in the limelight and be revered by millions of adorning fans.
As an athlete it is a pretty natural thing to want to be watched. It’s entertainment. The fans (I’m one of them) gets a lot of joy watching sports, and it is a natural thing for an athlete to enjoy performing and making people happy. What’s more exciting that watching (or even better yet, playing in) the championship game, the state or national finals, an international meet, or maybe even the Olympics? You will often hear an athlete say: “I live for those moments”.
There is something to those sentiments. Ideally, as an athlete, you want to get to a place mentally and physically where you can perform at your best when it counts – in the biggest moments. As an elite athlete, it even makes sense that a great deal of your time and energy are focussed on these key, extraordinary events, but, how does this translate in your spiritual journey?
God has taken me through much in the decades that I have been a Christian. There have been times where I have said that “I am yearning for more of Him”, but in retrospect I think I was yearning for more of what he could do or give me. I longed to see his supernatural intervention in my circumstances and in people around me, but was I content with just him? Was I content with just being with him in the mundane? Oswald Chambers summed it up pretty accurately with the following:
We do not need the grace of God to withstand crises— human nature and pride are sufficient for us to face the stress and strain magnificently. But it does require the supernatural grace of God to live twenty-four hours of every day as a saint, going through drudgery, and living an ordinary, unnoticed, and ignored existence as a disciple of Jesus. It is ingrained in us that we have to do exceptional things for God— but we do not. We have to be exceptional in the ordinary things of life, and holy on the ordinary streets, among ordinary people— and this is not learned in five minutes. My Utmost For His Highest Oct 21
Psalm 84: 5-7 reads: “Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage. As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools. They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion”. Notice that as the pilgrims pass through the Valley of Baca (a desert), “they” make it a place of springs”. It says that “they” make it a place of springs and not “God”. God has put the springs there and if we are content to simply plug into God in our good times, in our bad times, and in the mundane, we make him a spring of refreshment for ourselves, and those who come after us. As you choose to graft yourself into Jesus (John 15: 5-8), you create wells for those around you as well. Are you content in going to him and saying: “Lord do with me as you like. I don’t need to be on a pedestal. I don’t need to be adored. I am ok if no one notices me but you. I am good just being with you.” Your calling may be in the spotlight but if it is, let God take you there with him. Be content with the mundane and be available for the extraordinary.