July 4: Your Race

Read Hebrews 12:1-29

On your mark…get set…go!  Today, you find yourself engaged in a race.  It’s the race of life.  Not a rat race life that lacks purpose.  Not a “hamster in a wheel” life where there is no progress.  Not a dog-eat-dog life, in which the objective is to elbow, push, and gobble up others so that you are the lead dog.  No, life is a race that leads you to the presence of God through experiences that are designed to make you more like Christ.

Here are some characteristics of the life race you are in:

Your race is a relay race.  Others have gone before you.  Stories of their faithful race are found in chapter 11.  Now, the baton is in your hand.  And, short of the Lord’s return, others will follow you.  You run, then, inspired by those who have finished and as an example for those who have yet to run.

Your race is an endurance race.  This is no 100-meter sprint followed by induction into a hall of fame and a spectator mentality.  Apart from you being in God’s presence yet today, tomorrow you will rise again, and God’s plan is that you will once again run faithful to His plan.  But take heart, even endurance races have finish lines!

Your race is fraught with challenges.  There will be things that will attempt to hinder your faithful progress.  Sin will attempt to entangle you and prevent you from moving forward.  Hardship will tempt you to pull off course and forget about the life race of faithfulness.  Don’t let those things hold you back!

Your race is personal.  There is a race that is marked out for you.  It will differ from the course of the person next to you.  Without jealously comparing or attempting to join them in their “easier” race, you are called to faithfully move ahead on yours.

Your race has its perfect example.  Jesus also ran.  He endured.  He didn’t let Himself be sidetracked.  And, when His race was over, He sat down.  Fix your eyes on Him.

And run faithfully.