Insights from a Glory-Bound Lady”
Volume 3 Number 16, “We’re Runners in the Race”
April 15th, 2020
It took me forever to work up the courage to ask Karen for a date in our senior year of high school in 1969. She was talented, smart, beautiful and an athlete. To be honest, she was way out of my league, and I was positive she’d say no. She was voted the most athletic female of our senior class, and as for me, well, let’s just say there’s not much about me that spells athletic! I was stunned when she said, “Yes!” For forty-eight years, I never dated anyone else.
I married an athlete. No wonder when she heard a message that I preached from Hebrews 12, she dug in further into her own study of the text and wrote some observations for herself in her Bible study journal. Her notes are brief but really powerful. Let me share the text and the first two things she wrote from last week. Then I will share with you the next two things she wrote about her race.
“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, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12:1-2).
From last week, good runners remember the rules of the race.
1. Good runners never waste energy by complaining (Hebrews 13:5, 15).
2. Good runners never lose focus by comparing (Hebrews 12:2).
Karen wrote: I need to remember the rules of the race.
3. Good runners never slow down by collecting and clinging to things. The writer of Hebrews wrote, “For you had compassion on me in my chains, and joyfully accepted the plundering of your goods, knowing that you have a better and an enduring possession for yourselves in Heaven” (Hebrews 10:34).
4. Good runners never disqualify themselves by compromising. Paul writes about this in 1 Corinthians 9:24-27 where he shares his desire to live in such a way as to never make sinful choices in which he would be disqualified from serving the Lord.
Michael’s observation: Even those of us who aren’t very athletic are still engaged in running the race as Christians. We aren’t competing against each other. We are running with the Lord. Therefore, we must never become too deeply rooted in this world as we cling to our possessions. While there’s nothing wrong with enjoying the things that the Lord has allowed us to have, we must always remember that the things of this world are very temporary. Keep our focus on the Lord and the things that count for eternity. We also cannot take shortcuts on this race, even if they appear enticing. We must be good runners and remember Karen’s four rules of the race!