Running Our Race

Running Our Race

One of the most famous chapters in all of the Bible is Hebrews 11 or, as some have called it, the Hall of Faith.  Here we have listed the names of people down through biblical history whose lives exhibited strong faith.  We have such people as Abel, Abraham, Sarah, Jacob and Joseph mentioned-names that no doubt a lot of us have heard all of our lives.  “Such men and women of God!” we exclaim, as if to say they were part human/part angels, living lives none of us could ever attain.

Then we move on to chapter 12 and verse 1 which reads, “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.”  The first half of the verse talks about a “great cloud of witnesses” which no doubt refers back to those people of faith in chapter 11.  Then the admonition to lay aside sins, particularly “besetting sins” which so easily weigh us down.  And why should we? So that we can “run with patience the race that is set before us.”

Have you ever run a race?  I never have and don’t particularly enjoy running.  Waking and hiking?  Absolutely!  But not running.  My wife Amy, on the other hand, has run multiple races.  Any well-established race is going to have a predetermined course or track that the runners are called to follow for a predetermined distance.  No runner gets up on race day unsure of where they are going to run or for how far.  No, the race is already laid out before them.  And so it is with our “race” or, more easily understood, our life.   Each of us aren’t here alive in October of 2021 by chance.  No God in His sovereignty determined that our race would be here and now.  And how long is our race?  Only God knows!  Your race might end up being 30 years longer than mine, or vice versa.  Either way, we are called to live with patience, or endurance, the race or course that God has called each of us to run.  One person’s race might be relatively easy and “blessed” with financial wealth, physical health and very little problems.  While someone else’s race might seem to be the exact opposite.  Yet each of us is called to be faithful and keep walking with God, one day at a time.  This is not the time to quit or be tempted to lay down, no matter the circumstances around us.  No, may we run this race with faithfulness and patience until the time God calls for our race to be over.

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