Fighting The Good Fight

rockyOne of the true facts of life is that it is rarely a cake walk and it often serves up a big slice of tough times.  Regardless of the path you choose to follow or the dream you will pursue, you may have to scrap a little along the way.

When the odds seem to be stacked against you, you might want to heed the words of Sylvester Stallone’s alter ego, Rocky Balboa and take it, “One step. One punch. One round at a time.”

Even though I never liked the politics of Muhammad Ali, I admired his prowess as a boxer.  The champ once said that, “The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses – behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road, long before I dance under those lights.”

Ali was known more for his ability to bob and weave than he was for a knockout punch, and his rope-a-dope antics frustrated his opponents as well as his fans.  There were few, however, who questioned his dedicated preparation for a fight and his desire to win.

Just as a boxer trains hard, studies his opponent, and then steps into the ring with faith in his skill set, the Christian needs to:

  • Endure hardness as a good soldier (2 Timothy 2:3)
  • Keep a cool head. Stay alert because the Devil is poised to pounce, and would like nothing better than to catch you napping. Keep your guard up (I Peter 5:8, The Message).
  • Fight the good fight, finish your course, and keep the faith 2 Tim 4:7-8
  • Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil (Ephesians 6:10-11).

The myth of Rocky Balboa was his ability to reach inside and find the inner strength to beat the unbeatable foe—he willed himself to win.

When you have to face a battle, remember the words of Psalm 144:1:  “Blessed be the Lord, my rock, He trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle.

God will do more than just train you, He will sustain you: “The Lord your God who goes before you will himself fight for you, just as he did for you in Egypt before your eyes (Deuteronomy 1:30).”

Note: One of my favorite theme songs is in this clip of  Rocky training with Apollo Creed https://youtu.be/TnqZl_blT7E

Is That Rocky or Sylvester?

Sylvester_StalloneHow many people do you know who are named Sylvester?  I can think of two.  To be truthful, one of them is a cat.   I can only think of one other person named Sylvester, and he disliked his name so much that he never used it.

Thanks to the work of Randal S. Olson, I learned something new about my name last night.    I discovered that in the year I was born, there were 6,286 other people who were also named Stanley.  The good thing is that 4,963 of us are still alive.

There is really no significance to my name; however, there is a name that is incredibly important:

  • Philippians 2:9-11: God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow . . . and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
  • Acts 4:12: There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to people, and we must be saved by it.

Do you want to learn a little more about your name?  Click here, and you can get started.