During the Olympics, relay races are run with a team of superbly trained athletes – and with a baton. In one critical moment, a race is often won or lost. What is that moment? It’s the moment when runners pass the baton. Races are lost or won based on speed, of course. Yet, an accurate baton placement secures the race. This element is drilled again and again by coaches.
To pass the baton in a race is a big deal. It’s an even bigger deal to pass the baton in daily life.
Pass The Baton and Technology
Even in these modern times, life is a challenging race, don’t you think? But we have tools to make a difference. No other generation has been so blessed with science, medicine, and technologies that make life profitable and enjoyable.
This content about your life race would be incomplete without a strong focus on technology. You can manage your life race by implementing various technologies. Education is in your reach anywhere in the world with online resources. Information is available for all kinds of applications with a quick google search. Fix-it-yourself YouTubes are common. Monitoring your calendar, responsibilities, and appointments is at your fingertips on your phone. Virtual business meetings or visits with friends can happen on zoom. Even medical equipment is easily synced wirelessly. It’s a new virtual world!
However, a virtual world doesn’t provide meaningful existence, peace, and hope people long for. Fear and insecurity still lurk in people’s hearts as they run their life race. Even as people explore the purpose of their existence, the enemy targets to render them ineffective. He uses anything – even technology.
People are hungry for something technology can’t give. They ask questions every generation asks.
- What is life all about?
- Is there a God?
- Who really is God?
- How can I know Him?
- Why do I sometimes feel at odds with God?
- How can I live a relevant life in this digital age?
- Is there more to life than patterns, careers, advancements, and daily drudgery?
People need purpose to run their race, even in our age of technology. You need to pass the baton.
Pass The Baton
Even though Paul didn’t have technology, he effectively talks about the race of your life. Being a good coach, he provides training points. This dramatically-converted Jew, becomes a baton-passer for Jesus and discovers his passion.
Consequently, Paul introduces critical, global ideas about passing the baton.
- Paul declares a true Jew is anyone who believes on Jesus: Israelite or Gentile.
- He passes the baton to many nationalities, cultures, and ethnicities by inviting everyone to know God and train in godliness.
- Additionally, Paul wants you to run a strong race on equal footing to everyone – in your own lane. And he wants you to grab the baton and partner with God.
- Finally, Paul wants you to become a trainer of others and pass the baton to them.
Have you studied Paul’s e-pistles in Scripture? He’s passing the baton to you. Have you grabbed it?
Pass The Baton Themes
Although not always directly, Paul focuses on baton passing. This Pharisee leader – once proud, cocky, and zealous – now a follower of Jesus – is completely different.
How is he different?
- Paul now writes with humility, experience, and skill. That’s new for Paul!
- His baton pass engages pains-taking quill-and-ink letters written to early fledgling churches – a labor of love and time, often while in chains. This is also new for the man who used to hunt Jesus followers.
- Also, Paul’s training provides creative ideas and practical examples for life situations. Definitely a step away from empty traditions he once insisted on.
- Paul has future generations in mind – like our technology generation. God passed the baton to Paul – to pass to you and me – to pass to others. Subsequently, this edifying passion builds Christ’s church.
- He cares deeply about people’s needs. Paul changed focus from his own reputation – to pass the baton for Jesus by focusing on each person.
This “transformed Paul” wants you to know your life race matters. His training involves special themes for your life race.
1. God’s Grace
God’s grace is one of Paul’s themes. Paul once targeted people that didn’t “make the cut” in his eyes. He hunted and persecuted them. Then the Spirit of God transformed this strong runner as he surrendered to training in God’s Grace. Subsequently, His decision for Jesus Christ rocked the world – and still does.
Paul opened his heart to receive God’s active grace. He urges you to do the same in three ways:
- Trust God’s grace. Get in the race!
- Be obedient to prove you love God back. Train!
- Rest in Christ. Relax. Be the person God created.
Because these training points work, “Jesus runners” can successfully and humbly pass the baton to others.
Living in God’s grace helps you join the race!
2. Giving Up Rights
Paul modeled giving up personal rights. What transformation for this egotistical Pharisee, zealously pursuing the wrong stuff. But Paul found his individual purpose and passion. Therefore, as Paul gave up his rights, God trained him to focus on the “baton hand-off” maneuver.
So, two questions for you:
- Have you given up your personal rights?
- Have you found your individual purpose and passion?
God knows your design and how to train you. Why not find your purpose and passion?
Giving up personal rights helps you find your purpose and power as a team runner.
Paul’s baton-passing focus is two-fold:
- God’s grace (already mentioned) – a very humbling reality.
- Working out salvation – gratefully, courageously, sacrificially agreeing with God.
Because training is required to be a good runner and pass the baton, you need to know How To Get Into God’s Word Even With A Super Busy Life. There is no other book on earth as relevant as God’s Word even in our digital age of technology. So, train daily with God. Agree with Him on every point. Work out your salvation.
Jesus said, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will never pass away.” (Mt. 24:35; Mk. 13:31; Lk. 21:33)
Since it’s the only thing that will last, don’t you think it’s good to be in Scripture daily?
Training and working out your salvation builds you into a solid team runner.
4. Humility, Strength, Healing
You can be strong.
And you can be healed.
Your faith in Christ’s redeeming work on the cross enables race maneuvers you couldn’t manage before, including how to pass the baton. But it requires humility to respond with strength while opening your heart to heal.
So, train. Run. Pass the baton. Help someone live with “freedom and confidence.” (Eph.3:12)
Being humble, strong, and healed is the baton-passing secret that makes you a strong runner with influence.
Just as Paul realized, so it is for you. Running a good life race means mastering “passing the baton” – which means obeying your Coach –
- With actions. Do you obey God till it hurts? Actions that please God are baton maneuvers.
- In words. Does your every word reflect Christ’s high-functioning influence? Words are a baton-pass.
- By attitudes. Do your moods and disposition reflect Jesus’ sweet character? Godly attitudes increase your baton skills. (Eph. 4:23)
The best baton pass is when you run your race with actions, words, and attitudes that please God.
Somehow, God empowers simple obedience to run a strong race and pass the baton.
Your Race Matters
Your life matters, friend. Since you are a valued member of God’s team:
- Run your race!
- Train daily to share God’s love and hope through Jesus.
- Pass the baton.
- Use technology as a resource.
Your task is integrating Paul’s training points into our technology-loaded times AND passing the baton.
Application Thoughts and Questions
- What’s life all about for you?
- Have you grabbed onto the baton and learned how to pass it?
- Do you believe your race matters?
- Are you daily opening your heart to God’s transforming grace?
- Have you given up your rights?
- What commitment have you made to work out your salvation daily?
- Honestly assess how to grow in humility, strength, and healing. Make a list of action steps for changes.
- Are you spending regular time reading, studying, memorizing, and meditating on God’s Word? (Remember: meditating is picturing how to carry out it out.)
God wants you to grab your technology tools and start running. Learn how to pass the baton to others who desperately need the Lord.
Check out these resources that give practical action steps, encouragement, training points, and life tools to run a strong race each day. Learn to pass the baton! Some of today’s content comes from two books. Once you’ve completed them, you’ll have studied every e-pistle (letter) Paul wrote to help Jesus followers run well.
- E-pistles for an i-Generation: Relevant in a Digital Age
- More E-pistles for an i-Generation: Relevant in a Digital Age.
Another resource we mentioned today is How To Get Into God’s Word Even With A Super Busy Life. This ebook does just what its title says.
Order your copies of these resources now.
Visit our website for devotional materials, articles, podcasts, and resources to help grow your faith in God. Pursue noble character and an Alive and Active Life.