Wherefore seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin that does so easily beset us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us (Heb. 12:1). The apostle Paul often used the analogy of living the Christian life and running a race. Runners don’t run a race with weights on their ankles and wrists. They wear shorts, sleeveless shirts, and light weight running shoes. Why? So they can run as hard and as fast as they possibly can. They want nothing to impede their progress of swiftly moving forward. Those weights could include worry, pride, working too much, bad attitudes, and many others, including any sin that we retain in our lives. If there is anything in life that slows us down, then we need to lay it aside. We must retain all hope of winning the reward at the end of life’s race.
We, as Christians must run with endurance and purpose, because the race we run is not easy, in fact, it is treacherous. There are many pitfalls to avoid and hills that we must climb. Then we must also decend through the dark valleys of sorrow and depression that are sure to come. These snares come in many different forms and at all stages of life. Once we start there is no time out, no turning back. When this race becomes a struggle, we must decide, do I keep running or do I quit? The choice we make will determine where we, and perhaps others, spend eternity, in heaven with Christ, or in Hell with Satan.
We can’t just plod around this track of life uncaring, without purpose, and endurance, and ever hope to win the prize. Paul teaches us to discipline ourselves (I Cor. 9:24-27). The worldly also runs a race, but they run for a corruptible crown, while we run for that incorruptible crown in heaven. Let us remember, we are not running this race alone, so we must run with confidence to encourage those who are running with us. Let us make no excuses and never be slack in this race for the cause of Christ. Running is the only way we can ever hope to reap that heavenly prize. If you have not begun this race, then may I encourage you to do so immediately, before it becomes eternally too late.
We invite one and all to come worship God in spirit and in truth with us each Sunday morning at the Kedron church of Christ on the Coopertown Road, Russellville Ky. We neither add to God’s Word or take from it.