And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith. Hebrews 12:1-2
There is an analogy of the Christian life being described as running a race. This imagery comes from Hebrews 12. The author of Hebrews encourages us to run the race of life with endurance.
Do you consider yourself a runner or does the very thought of running makes you cringe? Regardless of your opinion of running, running is always better when you have friends by your side. These friends may be cheering you on from the sidelines, or handing you a cup of water along the way.
The author of Hebrews writes about this race we are all on, but it is a different type of marathon. We are all running our own races, but that doesn't mean we are alone. There is a cloud of witnesses cheering us on, running alongside us, and refreshing us with water. We are in this together. We can pray for each other, love each other, and encourage each other. Community is one way we can endure the difficulties and challenges of life that slow us down.
Along the race, we may find mile-long stretches that there is no one in sight. There is no one giving us a cup of water or shouting our name from the sidelines. During these periods it may be difficult to keep pressing on. We rely on our training - reading scriptures and prayer. We hold on to promises of Jesus’ love, grace, and forgiveness which give us the strength to continue to press forward during those difficult miles. Those challenging miles also prepare us to pay attention and support those who are in their own challenging stretches.
As we run the race of life, we trust God is forever with us. We trust that God has already promised and given the prize of everlasting life to each of us, whereever we are on the race. And we keep running, together.
Jesus, there are times that I feel alone in this race of life. I thank you for my siblings in Christ who are there with me on this race, running beside me. Amen.