“The only thing that counts is…” Galatians 5:6 (Don’t worry, I’ll give you the rest of the verse in a minute.)
When I was in college, a few mischievous friends and I tried to carry out a century-old tradition by climbing up into the steeple of our chapel on campus. We got lost in that big, dark building, so we never made it to the steeple, but we did find something that would forever change my perspective.
Our misguided quest led us to a hidden door. We entered a dark room. Enough moonlight was trickling in through the old, stained glass windows for us to see that room was full of something. My curiosity got the best of me and I decided that I had to flip the light switch and see where we were even if it meant we got caught trespassing.
As my eyes began to adjust to the light and the room came into focus, it took me a moment to comprehend what I was seeing. From floor to ceiling, from wall to wall, this room was packed full of a hundred years worth of…Trophies. There were trophies for everything: Music, Academics, Football, Baseball, Philanthropy and everything else you can imagine. I looked at these trophies and thought to myself, “At one time, these represented somebody’s crowning achievement, and now, they’re broken and dust-covered in a forgotten old room.” A quote from Dr. James Dobson rang in my ears, “Life will trash your trophies.”
That experience caused me to rethink my life’s pursuits. I didn’t want to pursue “trophies” that ultimately wouldn’t matter. I searched God’s Word for answers and I was surprised by what I found. Galatians 5:6 tells us plainly that the only thing that really matters isn’t money or fame or success or even religion. It is simply “…faith expressing itself through love.”
In short, life is about loving Jesus and allowing our faith in Him and our love for Him to be our life’s pursuit. When we do that, our lives have purpose, we become a blessing to the people around us, we become a part of God’s family, and one day, we’ll receive the only “trophy” that really matters…The Crown of Righteousness that God has promised to all who love Him.