The Olympics Games provide for us the thrill of watching human beings achieve great accomplishments, the notoriety of experiencing history-making events, the captivating-intensity of competition, the exhilaration and national pride of our country winning the gold, and the inspiration of people who sought a goal and achieved much. It is those inspiring stories that enthrall us and rivet us to the details of what made that athlete into the kind of person that could extend themselves to be the best in the world. We want to know what made them into an Olympian, and what kept them on their path despite the obstacles and defeats.
One story caught my attention out of this first week of the 2016 Summer Games. It was a story, yes of achieving an Olympic medal, but for me it was more of where these athletes chose to set their focus. They undoubtedly were on a path to be the best they could be at their sport, but they had a deeper value they beheld that shaped their outlook on life, formed their character, and infused their self-esteem with a grounded and humble outlook. That is rare among those who achieve such accomplishments, be it in sport, in business, financially, or in fame. Many let what they achieve define them, and as they behold their own greatness they become prideful, arrogant, demanding, and some even get belligerent.
What we behold matters because what we place as majorly important in our lives influences us, for we become what we behold. We are shaped by what we set our heart, our core attention on. The Bible says this about our heart:
Proverbs 4:23 Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.
Proverbs 27:19 As in water face reflects face, so the heart of man reflects the man.
What influences our heart is what we behold, what we value, what we set as those deep truths of life. The athletes I am speaking of are David Baudia and Steel Johnson, silver medalists in the Men’s synchronized 10meter platform diving event. They both had worked hard to rise to the precision of an Olympic medal, but they had chosen to behold something deeper.
In an interview with an NBC reporter asking what it all means for this team to win the silver, Baudia said, “Yeah, I just think the past week, there’s just been an enormous amount of pressure, and I’ve felt it. You know, it’s just an identity crisis. When my mind is on this, thinking I’m defined by this, then my mind goes crazy, but we both know our identity is in Christ.” Steel Johnson responded as well, “I think the way David just described it was flawless. The fact that I was going into this event knowing that my identity is rooted in Christ and not what the result of this competition is just gave me peace.” These two have beheld Jesus and it had an incredible impact on their lives. Beholding Jesus does influence us.
2 Corinthians 3:18 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
To behold Jesus is to learn of Him and set our hearts on who He is and what He has done. I know it has made an amazing difference in my life and I know it can in yours. Regardless if you have great knowledge of the biblical Jesus or know little, to seek Jesus and behold Him matters.
Matthew 6:33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
Why not give it a try. Investigate Jesus. Pick up a Bible and read the accounts of Jesus’ life in the Bible books of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Beholding Jesus matters.
Church is also a great place to behold Jesus. If you are not already connected to a church, we would like to invite you to Cypress Church or one of our branch churches in either Los Alamitos or Garden Grove this week. Our website has all the information you would need. www.cypresschurch.net .
This could be just what you are looking for in life.
Beholding what matters along with you,