Philippians 3:14 – I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (NKJV)
"Go, son, go!"; "Stay with the man"; "Run, run, stay with the ball"; "Shoot the ball"; "Go for the net!" All are familiar phrases heard by and shouted by many parents on a soccer field, night after night.
"Neither rain nor snow nor sleet nor hail …" may have been a saying heard in reference to the mail, but it sure is true in the soccer world. Bugs, wind, cold, rain, and even snow or blistering sun never stopped a game from going on.
For eight years, our boys played soccer. Each game and practice found us sitting on the sidelines, cheering them on. Why did we do this week after week and year after year? Yes, it was so that the boys could get exercise and learn how to become team players.
Those were my thoughts, but after eight years, on a fine Saturday afternoon — which happened to be the boys' last game of the season — we were to learn another reason.
As the final minutes of the game began to wind down, we were in store for a treat — a treat we had not received in all the years that the boys had played soccer. The treat was a goal — a goal scored by our son — yes, our son. It was his first goal in the eight years, and there on the sidelines were two parents who couldn't have been any prouder.
After the celebrating, the final minutes of the game ticked away. As our son came off the field to our wide, smiling faces, he said, "Goal accomplished!" From that point, he retired from soccer. He had no desire to continue to play; he had reached his goal of getting a goal. In the years since, when we have reflected on that day, we often joke about how, if he had gotten his goal in his very first game, his soccer career would have been very short! We would not have had to endure the rain, bugs, wind, and cold — and, oh yes, the scorching sun.
We wouldn't have had it any other way.
2 Timothy 4:7 – I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. (NKJV)
We are also striving to reach a goal — and it is not easy to reach. Some reach it sooner than others. It is hard and tiring work, but we press on through the challenges, for the Scriptures encourage us to press on.
Prayer: Dear Lord, there is only one goal that we are trying to reach. Help us to bring light to others so that they may also strive for the greatest goal of all. Thank You, Lord, that You are with us each and every step of the way. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.