How many of you have ever run a race? Any kind of race. 5k, 10k, Half or full marathon. Maybe you have participated in the Colored Up 5k at Hyland Heights. I say participated, because if you’re like me, there’s more walking than running. LOL! Moving right along.
The Bible talks about running a race. Here are a few scriptures that talk about that race.
2 Timothy 4:7 NIV
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
1 Corinthians 9:24 NIV
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.
Acts 20:24 NIV
However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.
Hebrews 12:1 NIV
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,
Let’s look at that last verse a little more. Specifically, the last few words. “The race marked out for us.” In a race, the runners are all running the same race. The course is the same. The distance is the same. The start and finish lines are the same. The conditions are the same. Everybody running the race faces the same conditions when they get to the start line. But when the gun goes off, things change a little. There are taller people and shorter people. There are people that weigh less or more than others. Maybe there are even some people with some sort of disability. With all of the race conditions being the same, everyone is running the same race, but they are not running the race the same.
So it is with us as Christ followers. We are all running the same race and hopefully we are running It in such a way as to win the prize. But how we run the race will look differently. Just like runners in a race have different skillsets, abilities, strengths and weaknesses, God has gifted us with different gifts and abilities to run the race marked out for us.
So, let me ask you; why is it that we sometimes try to run the race in a way that God did not intend for us to run? We try to run the race the way somebody else is running it because maybe we think they are doing better, or they have the “secret” to running the race. Maybe they look strong and are not tired at the hallway point and we are gasping for air. Or maybe we have to walk for a little while and they can still run, but we try to run to keep up with them and it just makes things exponentially worse.
God has given us specific gifts and abilities to run the race marked before us. I encourage you to discover, if you have not already, those gifts and abilities that God has given you and run the race the way God intended for you to run. Don’t be distracted by how others are running their race except to encourage them along the way.
Here’s the thing about a race. Everyone finishes in one way or another. The runners finish at different times and in all kinds of physical conditions. So it is with us a Christ followers. We won’t all cross the finish line together, but we will all cross the finish line at some point.
How are you running the race? Are you focused on how God wants you to run the race, or are you distracted by how others are running the race? I encourage you to zero in on how God wants you to run the race and go after it with everything you have got. Run it in such a way that you will be the one winning the prize. Because ultimately, we are winning the prize. We just need to run the race.
Love you all and praying for you daily.
Pastor of Worship Ministries