“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.”
Have you ever ran a marathon? Well, if I am going to be completely honest, I haven’t. But I’ve had a lot of friends who have. I’ve seen the dedication and time it takes to train and run the 26.21 miles. Hence, the reason I have never run a marathon. Ha! These people train for months — and for what?!? They have their reasons; whether it be to prove something to themselves, achieve a lifelong goal or they just love to run. Whatever it is, there’s always a motivation. Paul compares the Christian walk to running a long race.
Preparation comes with running a marathon. The proper training, outfit and goals all are fundamental in successfully running your race. Here are three necessities we need when running the Christian race:
- Get in the right gear. When running a race, you don’t wear street clothes; they would slow you down, cause blisters and just mess up your whole vibe. That’s what sin does if you don’t get rid of it. To run the race with no setbacks, we have to get rid of the sin that is causing us to slip up and slow us down.
- Train like there’s no tomorrow. We’ve got to build up our endurance by studying the Word and not giving up. It’s just like training for a marathon, one day off can set us back. But if we train every day, we slowly get stronger to the point where that 26.21 ain’t nothin’.
- Keep your eyes on the goal. While running a marathon, if the runner constantly thinks about how bad it hurts, how much longer she has, what is next — she would probably give up. When we keep our eyes on the prize, we tend to forget about our circumstances. Our prize is Jesus and who He is. Through Him, we receive peace, comfort, fulfillment and all the things the world cannot give. As we run the race for Christ, we have to keep our focus aligned with our prize.
Just like a marathon, the course is already set before us. As the runner, we just have to be rightfully equipped, train hard and keep our eyes on Him. Believe me, it will be worth it.