If we are going to reach for God’s highest, we must look to Jesus as our source and final authority. Notice how the Phillips translation states this challenge: “…let us run the race that we have to run with patience, our eyes fixed on Jesus the source and the goal of our faith” (Hebrews 12:1).
We are to look to Jesus and not ourselves. His life-style is our goal. His life in us is our source. Recognize that it is His life in us that makes us a success at everything we do. We can’t look at our lack of ability. To look continually at our own inadequacy or inability is to get our eyes off the author and finisher of our faith. He is the One Who perfects our faith. As we continue to look to Him, our faith develops.
The more we see Jesus, the more we understand His ability is available to us. We begin to recognize His willingness to use His power on our behalf. His compassion is directed toward us. We can accomplish whatever God sets before us because He is our Source. He is in us and His nature has been imparted to us. As we continue to look to Him and follow Him, we are being developed into His image. We are taking on His nature.
That is why self-consciousness is such a detriment to our Christian lives. To be self-conscious means that we are more conscious of “self” than we are of God. To put self above God is actually pride. Self is part of that weight which Hebrews instructs us to lay aside.
We must not allow self-consciousness to restrain us. Instead, reach for greater things than ever before. We have God’s ability within us to ensure our success.
There is also a tendency to look at the success or failure of others in determining the success or failure we can experience. We must never look to others for comparison. Second Corinthians 10:12 warns against this very thing: “For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise” (NKJV).
We must allow the victories of others to encourage us on to victory, and allow the failures of others to cause us to prayer for them.
We must never compare ourselves with someone else. Competition and comparison are deadly traps the devil uses to snare believers. There are those whose sole motivation was to look better than someone else. Unfortunately, ministers have also fallen into this trap. These people have taken their eyes off Jesus and put them on mere human beings. They have turned from truly uplifting people with God’s Word and become more concerned with keeping up with their contemporaries.
There is no place for competition in the Body of Christ. We are all aiming for the same goal. There is no need to keep up with the Joneses when you keep your eyes on Jesus.