Paul was like a man in training…ever prepared to give his best in the race. He understood that this demanded discipline…self-control. But he wanted the prize and counted all sacrifices worthwhile. Eternal rewards meant more to him than momentary gratification. Until we come to this same conviction, we are poor candidates for victory in the race of life.
In his letter to the Philippians, Paul again alludes to his effort in the race: “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13,14).
Discipline holds an important place in the successful Christian life. It is essential in maintaining daily Bible reading. There will be times when one does not feel like reading; times when some relaxing pastime appeals right at the time for personal devotions. But no one can have victory over sin without a regular intake of God’s Word. Discipline takes the tempted one to his Bible where he can receive the life- giving milk and meat that provides spiritual health.
Consistency in prayer comes through discipline. How glibly we recite our learned prayers and then wonder why answers do not come!
Discipline demands regular attendance at the services of the church where fellowship and Bible teaching combine to develop the abundant life.
We all need discipline to guarantee spiritual growth.