“… Let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:1,2)
Competition is rooted in pride. The end goal is to prove we are better at something than someone else. Some can say they are only competing with themselves, trying to beat their own personal best. However you look at it, any form of competition is meant to end with self-admiration.
The old hymn says, “So I’ll cherish the old rugged cross till my trophies at last I lay down.” When will we exchange our glory for the glory of our Master? The glory of the cross is found in a willingness to be the least instead of the greatest, the last instead of the first. As Jesus hung on the cross He possessed no glory, only shame, in the eyes of men. He was deemed the biggest loser. He had failed in His mission, ending up as just another wanna-be Messiah.
No one admired the pitiful, battered figure that hung on Calvary’s tree. But in heaven’s eyes, the greatest of all victories was taking place. The victor’s crown would soon be awarded the Lord’s Suffering Servant. Great shame would give way to great glory, the loser’s status would be replaced by the eternal reputation of Overcomer.
What do we have to glory in? Why should we want eyes upon us? Who are we anyway? Truly, we are nothing without Jesus. All our glory is like that of a fading flower. It is unworthy of comparison to the glory of the Son. Let us worship our Lord by seeking His glory and not our own. Let us count all that would be gain to us as loss that we might know Him – even in conformity to His death.
Compete with no one for a corruptible crown. Cling to the old, rugged cross – and exchange it someday for an eternal one.