We all want to live godly lives, but if there’s a way we can seize it without any training and preparation involved, it would be better, right? Yet this is not how things work out. The Bible strongly teaches the concept of training for godliness. The most important things in life come with a price – success, maturity, and excellence do not come in a form of a lottery ticket that you have a bag through a raffle.
Training is not easy. It is often tiring, exhausting. At first, you may find it enjoyable, but over time it takes its toll on you. Especially when it seems like nothing is happening after all the efforts exerted. Yet all successful athletes and performers know the value of training. The more you train, the more confident and effective you get.Training is not easy. It is often tiring, exhausting… Yet all successful athletes and performers know the value of training. The more you train, the more confident and effective you get. Click To Tweet
The same way is true with training in godliness. Yet how do we really train to be godly? Is it literally attending training in the church? Does it mean attending Sunday service and department fellowships? Is it going through the tedious tasks of discipleship? These things help, a lot. But I also think there’s more to this godly training than being present in church activities.
There are things about training that we are not really a fan of. Perhaps the Apostle Paul highlighted the word “to train” because of the following reasons:
Training for godliness requires time
We want results, and we want it now. We will not have any problems in the church, and the world will be a better place if godliness can be achieved in a short time. But this is not the case. Godliness cannot be achieved overnight. Remember that we are like planting a tree that is bound to produce a harvest. And if trees take time to grow, excellence and godliness take time to manifest.
It necessitates strenuous effort
We need to exert a lot of physical and emotional energies to make things happen. Sometimes we want to sleep early or get up late, but when we are committed to training for godliness, we push ourselves to overcome our fleshly desires. We are not after cheap results. If we exert mediocre efforts, we can only expect mediocre outputs.We are not after cheap results. If we exert mediocre efforts, we can only expect mediocre outputs. Click To Tweet
Godliness requires commitment
There will be times when we just want to give up being godly especially when seeing that there’s no significant change that has happened to us. And yet during these times that we want to give up our desire to be Christ-like, all the more we need to cling on to our commitment to stay on the training track and soon be changed for the long-term. Our commitment will either make us or break us.
Training for godliness is sacrifice
As if efforts aren’t enough, we also need to sacrifice a lot for godliness. What are you willing to give up? Your compromising lifestyle? Questionable relationships? Your convictions, or your resentments and unforgiving attitude? The desire to assert your rights for the sake of gentleness? For godly training to be effective, we often need a total overhaul of ourselves.
Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance. That is why we labor and strive because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and especially of those who believe.– 1 Timothy 4:7-10
Training begins with the heart. A heart that is willing to be trained to obey and to do what’s right no matter what. If every athlete’s battle cry for success is discipline, this also rings true to every believer training in godliness. Discipline is the key to successful training.
Both the Apostle Paul and his mentee, Timothy knew the importance of godly training, as well as the hardships it require. Yet the prize overwhelm the pain, and the process justifies the fruit. Godly training maybe hard but godly living has its rewards.