Last night I watched Serena Williams battle a young Israeli girl, Shahar Peer, in the Australian Open tennis tournament. Serena is battling her way back into shape after only playing 4 matches last year. She is a former No. 1 player in the world and has enormous tennis skills and talent. In years past she would have made quick work of players like Shahar, but she is not yet playing to her former top level. Serena lost the opening set and became visibly agitated with herself. She'd slap her thigh and utter expressions like: "Let's get going!" As it turned out she was able to battle back and win the match, through determination probably more than ability. Serena was quoted afterward: "I am the ultimate competitor". It occurred to me that her real competition last night was not a young girl from Israel. She was her own toughest competition as she urged her 'out-of'shape' body to do more than it wanted.
We must also overcome ourselves to enjoy the sweetest walk with the Lord.
1 Corinthians 9:25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26 Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. 27 No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.