Tuesday, January 1, 2013
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It was one of those really special 90-degree days, when it is very humid and I was just finishing about eight miles on my bike. I was feeling all fit, and then I passed Tom running all ten and a half miles around that lake. Well, I realized that Tom did that every day. Nobody knew; nobody noticed actually.
But I knew that he'd be in the headlines back home, and he'd be in the headlines a lot. Because he was one of the county's champion track stars. And I yelled to him from my bike, "No time off for vacation?" And he reminded me that running is a 12-month sport.
Champions aren't made on the day of the race with the crowd applauding. It turns out they're made on like a thousand unsung mornings.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "A Thousand Unsung Mornings."
I've never understood people who get involved in a sport or an activity or in anything and just settle for like being mediocre. If you're going to get into something, well, aim to be all you can be. Right? If that's true in sports, it's really true when it comes to serving the King - the Lord Jesus Christ.
Maybe you've looked at spiritual champions you know, or some leader, or somebody you admire as a spiritual person and you said, "Boy, I'd like to be used by God that way. I wish I could teach, or preach, or minister musically, or lead like that. I'd like to make a difference. I'd like to influence people for Christ like that person does." And you see them in a public setting at the pulpit, or you watch them on television or you hear them on radio. You read their book, maybe hear them in concert or on a CD. But the ministry you see in a spiritual champion is because of something you don't see. Just like that championship runner, chugging out those miles on those back roads. Nobody noticed; nobody seeing him, but that's where the champion is built.
Okay, Isaiah 50:4, our word for today from the Word of God says this: "The Sovereign Lord has given me an instructed tongue to know the word that sustains the weary." Now, how does he keep coming up with the words that people need? It says that "God wakens me morning by morning; wakens my ear to listen like one being taught." Okay, the great prophet of God says here, "morning after morning" there is a meeting with his Lord that nobody sees.
And while others are resting, the champion is in God's Word, he's on his knees; not going on spiritual binges occasionally to get some great spiritual insight. No, no, no, no. He does it day after day, week after week, month after month. And finally there's all these years of accumulated time with the Lord, and how He's touched you, and how He's changed you, and how He's moved you. So, when he speaks, he speaks with a "God-instructed tongue" he says, because he shows up for class every morning. See, there's no glory there. There's no crowds applauding. It's just Christ's personal presence, and you're there with Him.
Anything I have ever said for the Lord that has ever touched anyone has been because He touched me in private first where no one could see, no one else could hear. He wants to do that for you. He wants to do that for all His kids. Do you want to be used greatly by your Lord? Well, before you try to do a great work for Him, why don't you let Him do a great work in you? And you wake up each morning and let Him teach you before you leave.
I saw that in a young track star; a picture of any of us who would like to be God's champion; a winner who's being built on a thousand unsung mornings.