The Conservation of Energy

by Jefferson David Tant

There is an old saying about “the conservation of energy that goes like this: “Why run when you can walk, why walk when you can stand, why stand when you can sit, and why sit when you can lay down.” I guess you really would conserve your energy if you employed that strategy. But do you realize that all of those words are applied to our lives as Christians? Let’s use our brain’s energy to consider how God’s Word uses those words for our good.


Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win” (I Corinthians 9:24).

Did you ever run track in high school or college? Did you ever see anyone in a race who was just walking along at a leisurely pace? Obviously not. Every single person in a race is in it to win. Many readers are probably familiar with the TV show “America’s Got Talent.” A while back there was an adorable little girl from Atlanta named Angelica Hale. She appeared on the show first when she was nine, and stated, “I’m in it to win it.”

That should be our goal in running the Christian’s race. Any race we enter is going to require our energy and effort if we expect to win the prize. There is no way to reach heaven’s gate by being an “average” Christian. We must “run in such a way that you may win.”


I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, entreat you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called” (Ephesians 4:1).

In the state of Tennessee, we have “Tennessee Walking Horses.” These horses are trained to walk a certain way, and thus they are known for their running walk. This is a four-beat gait with the same footfall pattern as a regular, or flat, walk, but significantly faster. In contests, the horses are judged by how they walk.

So, as the horses are judged by the way they walk, so are Christians to be judged by the way we walk. Later in Ephesians Paul urges us to pay attention to the way we walk. “Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men, but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:15-16).

When those around us observe our daily activities and hear us speak words, what impression do they get? How would they judge our lives? Would it be obvious to them that we are different from the world, that we are Christians? I remember a friend telling me about going to a high school reunion many years after graduation. In a conversation with one of his classmates, he said she told him, “I always knew there was something different about you.” What was different? What was different was his walk as a Christian. So, can those we come in contact with in our daily lives sense that we are different? A Christian’s example has led to conversions when others want to know more about a Christian’s life.


Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong” (I Corinthians 16:13).

Weaklings are not who we would consider successful in their endeavors. We all face challenges in our lives, and sometimes those challenges have to do with our faith, our values, our manner of life. Do we stand firm as to who we claim to be, or do we back off some so as not to lose friends, be ridiculed, or suffer loss? In the news recently was a woman who worked at a Starbucks coffee shop who got fired from her job. Why? Because she refused to wear a “Gay Pride” apron that her boss wanted all employees to wear in support of the homosexual agenda.

In the lives of all Christians, there will come times of trial when our faith will be tested. We don’t know how many times Paul was tested and tried. He gives us a glimpse in II Corinthians 11:23-27, "Are they servants of Christ? (I speak as if insane) I more so; in far more labors, in far more “imprisonments, beaten times without number, often in danger of death. Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep. I have been on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from [my] countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren; I have been in labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure.

In my life, I haven’t known anyone who has suffered like that. If Paul could “stand firm” in those situations, so can we, no matter what trials and hardships we may face.


'Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will dine with him, and he with Me. He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne” (Revelation 3:20-21).

What an honor that will be, to be invited to sit with our Lord and Savior, the very one who was willing to endure an excruciatingly painful death for someone like any one of us, who were not worthy of that sacrifice. And what a joy to be able to be with loved ones who have gone before, and to get to know heroes of the faith — Abraham and Sarah, David, Isaiah, Esther, Joseph and Mary, Paul, Deborah, and so many others.

Lay Down

This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:12-13).

Why did Christ lay down his life for us? Because he wanted to keep us from the fires of hell and obviously to be with him in heaven. So, the question is, to what extent are we willing to lay down our lives to save our family, friends, neighbors, or strangers from the fires of hell? If you don’t tell your neighbor about the “Good News,” who will? I would hate for someone standing next to me on Judgment Day, and who is destined for hell, turn to me and say, “Why did you never mention Him to me?” in the words of the old song in our hymnals.

Can you give someone a tract, invite them to church, or ask for a Bible study? If you don’t feel competent to lead a study, there are others who will help you. Will there be anyone in heaven because of you? Think about it. You don’t have to be a Bible scholar to do these things, just a caring soul.

These words were written, not to conserve energy, but to conserve souls

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