Living Joyfully Ever After! Part 5: Chasing the Right Prizes!
February 6, 2022
 To be genuinely and lastingly joyful, we must “chase the prize” of – Christ!
Philippians 3:7-10 (MSG)
The very credentials … people are waving around as something special, I’m tearing up and throwing out with the trash – along with everything else I used to take credit for. And why? Because of Christ. 8Yes, all the things I once thought were so important are gone from my life. Compared to the high privilege of knowing Christ Jesus as my Master … everything I once thought I had going for me is insignificant—dog dung. I’ve dumped it all in the trash so that I could embrace Christ 9 and be embraced by him . . .
10 I gave up all that inferior stuff (his impressive religious resume of personal achievements) so I could know Christ personally …
- We get to know Jesus in a personal way by talking and listening!
Matthew 6:5-6 (MSG)
And when you come before God, don’t turn that into a theatrical production … All these people making a regular show out of their prayers, hoping for stardom! Do you think God sits in a box seat? 6 Here’s what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace.
- We get to know Jesus in a personal way by hanging out with his friends and family!
- Knowing Jesus in a personal way won’t happen without wanting a closer and deeper relationship with him!
Matthew 5:6 (NIV) — Blessed (lit: joyful) are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness (right relationships), for they will be filled.
 To be genuinely and lastingly joyful, we must chase the prize of –
Philippians 3:12 (TLB) — I haven’t learned all I should even yet, but I keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ saved me for and wants me to be.
Proverbs 18:15 (MSG) — Wise men and women are always learning, always listening for fresh insights.
It takes humility to be a learner!
Proverbs 11:2 (NLT)
Pride leads to disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.
Learners ask lots of questions!
Philippians 3:13 (TLB)
No, dear brothers and sisters, I am still not all I should be, but I am bringing all my energies to bear on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead,
 To be genuinely and lastingly joyful, chase the prize of –
Philippians 3:14 (TLB)
I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God is calling us up to heaven because of what Christ Jesus did for us.
Galatians 6:9 (NLT)
So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.