“Track and field is filled with sacrifice, but I’ve learned that you cannot sacrifice yourself. It’s the first rule of being human. We only have one body, and it is ours for the duration of our lives.”
-Shante Little, Great Britian, WAC Teammate
Last week I came across a blog post from Shante and this quote of hers has echoed inside of me ever since. Shante is determined and extremely hard working. She has big dreams. She goes after what she wants. She does not back down from a challenge and has been earning the respect of teammates, coaches, and sponsors alike. In this post she talks about injury and the setbacks she endured leading into her first British Championships, and how incredibly fearful that made her… but more than anything she wanted to be brave. Though odds were stacked against her, she made a deal with herself that she would take the risk and run because quitting meant, in her mind, she was to “lay down and die”. And even though she ran painfully, she made it to the finals. But after preliminaries the decision was made to forgo the final race with the bigger picture of her 2016 season in mind… And with the decision made, she goes on to say…
“Track and field is full of sacrifice,
but I’ve learned you cannot sacrifice yourself.
It’s the first rule for being human.
We only have one body, and it is ours for the duration of our lives.”
You don’t have to run track to understand what she’s saying. Just replace the words track and field with studying medicine, running a business, being governor, being a mom, owning a home, _________(fill in the blank), and the quote above is directly applied to your life. Do you feel it??
It’s because of that principle, that I cannot get the picture of Christ out of my head; the fact that He sacrificed Himself for us. “…but I’ve learned you cannot sacrifice yourself.” It’s true. Track and Field is not worth sacrificing ourselves. It is temporal. But is there something worth sacrificing ourselves (our very bodies/being) for?? Jesus thought so. Jesus knew so. He knew that my soul was worth sacrificing Himself for. “…you cannot sacrifice yourself. It is the first rule for being human.” Thank goodness the Son of God was not merely human.
“Though He was in the form of God, He did not count equality with God something to be grasped, but emptied Himself by taking the very form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. (“…we only have one body“) And being founding human form, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”
Obedient. Obedient to whom? To the Father. Just before His death Jesus asked God to take this cup away from Him (the cup of having to sacrifice His body) but ultimately said – not my will, but Yours (Father). “…we only have one body and it is ours for the duration of our lives.” Christ willingly gave up His. Willingly, because He saw the eternal purpose. My soul. Your soul. And here’s the craziest part, the part that is truly radical… His call on our lives is to do the same. To take that first rule of being human, to take that one body, the one that is ours, and sacrifice ourselves. Not for something temporal, but for the eternal.
“Therefore I urge you, present your bodies as a LIVING SACRIFICE… Anyone who would come after Me must deny themselves, pick up their cross and follow.”
Deny them self.
Pick up their cross.
SACRIFICE them self.
He doesn’t ask us to go where He has not already gone. He doesn’t call us to sacrifice for something that will not last. He went before us. He laid down His life and His rights for our souls. But it cost Him everything. And it will cost us everything. It is not without promise. It is not without hope. “Whoever find his life will lose it, whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.”
“…we only have one body, and it’s ours for the duration of our lives.“
Christ calls us to sacrifice that right.
To follow Jesus.