Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.
I have noticed more and more of my friends are running marathons lately! Most of us have had to experience the burn of either a long run or maybe even just a short run that we were not in shape for. A marathon is a lot of work and anyone who runs them knows you cannot just train on a treadmill to run one, it takes getting your body adapted to running on the road.
Life can be the same way; we are running the race that God has set before us and as we begin it is a struggle to get in shape at times. Life is full of obstacles that we have to overcome in order to run the race and there are some tests that we will face over and over until we pass. You wouldn’t begin a running regimen when you are out of shape by going out and running 5 miles and God doesn’t start you out that way on your path to what He has called you to either. There can be days or weeks or maybe even years where it seems as though you are facing the same spiritual battle over and over and over just as though you were running on a treadmill, if that is where you are, ask God to show you what it is you need to learn from this experience to gain victory and move on! If you quit now you will find yourself back in this same spot before you can move on so why not just persevere now and get past this hurdle in life and move forward in what God has called you to.
Once when my children were little we were visiting my parents and they had a treadmill that was a huge hit with them. We taught them how to stand to straddle the track and get it started then start walking on it. Well Brian, my oldest, had just had his turn and Candace was bugging him to let her have a turn so he got off to let her have a turn but never turned the speed that he was going at down, (or he may have turned the speed up ~ he was probably about 8 at the time which means she was about 3 or 4) needless to say I just happened to look in from the kitchen as Candace took one step on the treadmill and went flying off across the living room. (she was ok, praise God, and I laughed so hard I cried because it was truly the craziest thing I had seen in a long time) My point is this; you aren’t going to reach the level of maturity that you see in someone else until you have passed your tests and exercised your faith to get you there. Just like Candace wasn’t prepared for the treadmill at that speed because of her age and lack of experience, it takes being intentional in our spiritual growth. Marathons aren’t run by sitting on the couch, it takes work and determination and life is no different. You will never accomplish all God has called you to if you can’t even take the time to read His word and discipline yourself to have the victory in your life He has called you to.
God has given you all you need to have victory in your walk and your run with Him. If you are struggling in an area of life you really need to ask Him what “exercises” you may need to do in order to have victory. It may be something as simple as spending more time in His word, or maybe more time in prayer, maybe there is a good book out there that deals with what you are struggling with, maybe you need to confess to your spouse, or mentor or accountability partner what you are struggling with so they can pray with you and support you. God will always provide the way if you ask Him to. He loves you and His ultimate goal for your life is for you to have victory!
So, I would encourage you today to let God take the weight of the world off your shoulders this morning, set aside that sin that wants to cling to you (take one day at a time) and begin running your race with Him today! Take one day at a time, one step at a time, and you will be amazed at how far you have come in a very short period of time.
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” Chinese Proverb
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