Friday, August 3, 2012

Olympic Running and the Race We Run

With the London 2012 Summer Olympics well under way, Olympic running has started. If you have done any running, you know the tremendous training that is involved in order to finish a race, let alone win it. Running is not easy.

It always amazes me how well tuned the Olympic runners are. They have trained for years to reach the level of athletes they have become. When they go to the starting line, their confidence is in their training. Each one runs the race to receive an Olympic medal. Fixing their eyes on the finish line, they will give it all that they have.

Each one of us has a race to run; our life is a race. No one else can run it for us; we run our own race at our own pace. How we choose to run it will determine our ultimate destiny. How can we successfully run our race?

The writer of the book of Hebrews in the New Testament gives us wonderful insight into how we should run our race: "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, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God" (Hebrews 12:1-2 ESV).

We all must choose how we will run our race. Let me share some ways that I have learned to successfully run mine:
  • I must quickly turn all of my anxiety over to God in prayer.
  • I have to get rid of sin in my life, being zealous to repent and run away from it.
  • I rely on my training for endurance—prayer and Bible reading / study.
  • I realize that I have been given a supernatural helper—the Holy Spirit.
  • I fix my eyes on Jesus; He has given me faith and is perfecting it as I run my race.
  • I think of the finish line, realizing that there are eternal rewards and rest there.
That's how I run my race. There are many trials and afflictions along the way, but I will cross the finish line. We all will. How we run the race is what matters.

How do you run your race?

Know that you are loved,