Friday, February 7, 2014
Running the Race That Lies Before Us
As for us, we have this large crowd of witnesses around us. So then, let us rid ourselves of everything that gets in the way, and of the sin which holds on to us so tightly, and let us run with determination the race that lies before us. Let us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, on whom our faith depends from beginning to end. Hebrews 12:1-2
This past week, on the news, quite a number of commentators have been talking about the Winter Olympics in Sochi Russia. Because the games haven’t actually started yet, most commentary has been about anything but sport. The topics have ranged from human rights to terrorism to the colours of the various teams uniforms.
However, the Olympians who are competing in these games have been training for years for this moment in time. Their focus has been on being faster, stronger and better than before. These athletes clearly have their eyes fixed on the highest prize possible, a gold medal.
The Apostle Paul said we need to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus and to rid ourselves of the things that hinder us. Things that hinder are like weights around our ankles that stop us running as fast as we can. These weights can be guilt, unforgiveness, jealousy or any one of a number of things that take our eyes off Jesus.
I believe the best way to get rid of these hindrances is to know who you are and in whose team you are competing. You need to know in your heart of hearts that you are a beloved child of God and you have every right to be in this race. You also need to remember your position in this team has been bought with the precious blood of Christ. And if you fall, the grace of God along with the power of the Holy Spirit will pick you up and help you get back on your feet.
We do all this because the prize for which we are striving is a deep and eternal friendship with the creator of the universe and the saviour of the world, and I am sure we all agree that this prize is worth more than any gold medal or any other earthly award.