Apples of Gold
Radio Script for June 30, 2008
“Train Yourself to be Godly”
Hello, I’m Doug Apple…with Apples of Gold.
My daughter is in training.
It’s summer vacation. It’s 7 a.m., and she is in training.
The first volleyball game is weeks away, but she is in training.
If the other team isn’t training already, they are falling behind. When they lose, they may blame a lot of things, but the losing or winning begins right now, in the training.
One thing training involves is hyper-focus. In volleyball you will spend hours developing the rhythm of “Bump, set, spike. Bump, set, spike.” In basketball the coach says, “We’re gonna shoot free throws until you can do it in your sleep!”
Actors will focus on a scene until they have it down. Musicians will focus on a solo. Firefighters practice rescues.
It’s all training that we do ahead of time, so that when it’s time to perform, we are ready.
With that in mind, look at First Timothy 4:7. “Train yourself to be godly.”
We know what it means to “train yourself to swim the 200 meter freestyle.” But what does it mean to train yourself to be godly?
What is “godly” anyway? We are godly when we reflect the characteristics of God.
So how can we train ourselves to be godly? Well it makes sense to me that we could pick one of the characteristics of God, then work on it.
For example, God is pure. So what can we do to be more pure like God?
My son introduced me to a new idea called “Simple House.” He is talking about moving into a house with other believers, and one of the goals is to purify themselves from worldly influences. For example, at Simple House there will be no TV or internet.
This is one example of Christians training themselves to be godly, in this case training toward the godly characteristic of purity.
Let’s pick another characteristic of God: slow to anger. How could you train yourself to be slow to anger?
First of all, when are you likely to be quick to anger? Is it while you are driving? Are you quick to anger during sports? Then train yourself to be more godly. Put a Bible verse on your dashboard if you have to. Chew on black licorice at the ballgame if you have to. Whatever you have to do, train yourself to change your behavior.
See, sometimes we want to leave this all up to God. “Yes, I have a temper problem. God just needs to take it away from me.”
But the Bible says “train yourself to be godly.” That puts the ball in our court. We need to work on it, to go into training.
Here’s the thing. We will train in all sorts of areas. Many people spend hundreds of hours in training for everything from track to cello to tracheotomies.
If you went to a piano contest, then messed up halfway through, wouldn’t you say you should have practiced more?
So why do we leave our godliness up to some kind of osmosis? Godliness is not some slippery quality that we either have or we don’t. It’s something we can train for.
It’s right there in the Bible, in First Timothy 4:7, “Train yourself to be godly.”
E-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
May God bless you today! With Apples of Gold…I’m Doug Apple.
© 2008 The Arrow’s Tip
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(Proverbs 25:11 – “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.”)
Why “The Arrow’s Tip”? Each morning, after diligently seeking the Lord, I write Apples of Gold. Then before I release it to the public I pray one final prayer, “Lord, send forth your arrows.” I envision Apples of Gold as arrows, tips dipped in the river of the water of life that flows from the throne of God (Rev. 22:1), sailing toward the hearts and minds of men and women around the world.
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