Running can be tedious and boring. I would love to say, I enjoy running but I don’t. As someone who loves and enjoy swimming, lockdown has forced me to pick up a new form of exercise – which is jogging and taking regular walks. I must say it has taken me a long time to get here. I remember my husband encouaraging me last year March during the first lockdown and having to work from home. He told me to consider running but I was hesitant until I notice girl, you have gain a bit of weight sitting down and starring at the screen for such a long period of time.
So you can imagine, someone like me trying to jog with a luggage – it will be impossible to do even two metres before dropping it.
Try and picture this! The whole Christian walk is to run a race. It is a race of faith. Not just a normal race but a long distance one. My family and I love watching athletics – during the season, whether indoor or outdoor, we all make time to watch. I must admit that sometimes when it comes to the five and ten thousand long distance races, we will take a break and come back – why? because it is long and can be boring.
Hebrews 12:1 reads – Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us
- Maybe you have been a Christian a few days now or for a very long time. Running this race can be boring and lonely at times.
- Or may at times you ask? Why is the race is so hard and feel like giving up. Like running a marathon – you encounter bumpy roads, mountains, and sometimes the speed limit is 5 mph due to pot holes or narrowness of the road.
Let me not lie to you, for this race, you need endurance which comes from the Lord as it can be extremely challenging.
- May be the devil sometimes whispers – why don’t you give up in this race? Enjoy life like everybody else. Remember, the devil is a liar and he always come to steal to kill and destroy as John 10:10 says. He has nothing good to offer.
In the book of Matthew 4:6-8, he says to Jesus the son of God, to fall down and worship him. In exchange he will give him the kingdoms of the world and the glory of them. But the Bible says, Jesus rebuked him. You can do the same to the devil, the deceiver, when he comes to you with lies to discourage you. Rebuke him and reject his lies to distract you.
Competitive long distance runners lay aside everything except what is absolutely necessary. The beautiful thing is the assurance that God is with you. He is ready to take that weight only if you will hand them over to Him. Finishing this race requires a lot of training, being intentional, and focus.
This long distance runners, train for months if not years to be able to run and achieve their desired goals. So child of God, everyday is training day for you; plus there is a prize to be won, so don’t give up!
1 Corinthians 9:24-27 says – Do you not know that in a race the runners all compete, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win it. 25 Athletes exercise self-control in all things; they do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable one. So I do not run aimlessly, nor do I box as though beating the air; but I punish my body and enslave it, so that after proclaiming to others I myself should not be disqualified.
During this training sessions, it is so important you pay close attention to what you are listening to, reading and even believing. Wrong beliefs can weigh down your heart, entangle your feet, distract your attention, and deplete your energy. These things can take you out of the race if care is not taken.
- It is important you identify your weights and resolve to do whatever it takes to lay them aside!
- You also need to focus. You cannot run aimlessly. Though we all share similarities in our Christian races, the Lord gives each of us a unique race to run. Not everyone’s weights are the same. Remember, each of us will be accountable to God. (Romans 14:12).
God has assigned to each of us the measure of faith needed for our respective races. What may be a weight for you may not be a weight for someone else.
Laying aside weights is not a onetime thing. It is a skill acquired through constant practice. So, don’t be discouraged. Don’t give up. Keep at it. Do it again and again and again.
Trusting Jesus can be challenging. It requires following the unseen into an unknown and believing. Jesus’s words are powerful, over and against the threats you see or the fears you feel. In these uncertain times, continue to walk by faith, trusting in God’s promises more than your perceptions.
The way to find rest is in the faithfulness of God!
Written by: Lydia Riley
Photo courtesy: ©Lucas Favre /Unsplash