Life, Faith & Running
". . . let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."
(Hebrews 12:1, NIV)
(Hebrews 12:1, NIV)
There is a race I believe we all long to run well. The training is steep. The discipline great. The rewards seemingly meek. The pain a ton. But still I choose to want to run the race of faith.
Some days are full. Some days a wreck. Some days my mind wants my body to crumble into a heap.
When my strength has run out and my motives are marred, I turn my soul to heaven’s words. Sometimes it helps. Sometimes it hurts. Sometimes I feel lost. Sometimes I feel found.
But no matter what, I know the curse will lift and I will rise again. Oh, wretched sin, birthed at The Fall. You tangle all my heart and soul. You blur my sight, you shade my vision, but in a way you push me back to my savior.
In a race a runner moves down beaten paths, and up ragged hills. All the way knowing the race will be done by end of day. The finish line not too far away.
In this life we all run a race: Not of flesh and blood but of time, purpose, and faith.
With broken hearts and tattered shields we fight through each day trying to win our restoration--trying to find our salvation.
Where is the Christ of our souls? The Christ of our minds? The Christ who, with our God, is making us whole?
He is here, in the words of His book. He is here, in the words of a friend. He is here, in the lyrics of a song. He is here in the breeze that beautifully pushes the leaves and waves. He is here, in the blood that makes muscles fire and hearts beat.
In a world all busted-up and shattered, He is here still. Asking us to choose to keep carrying the torch of His light: To keep running because running the race marked out for us matters.
It matters what we do and what we say. It matters the paths we choose to take. With all we do and all we are we can bring hope, peace and healing to the world at large. We can bring joy and display the glory of the King who reigns on high.
A King who redeemed our stories (each chapter, each paragraph, each sentence, each moment) on a cross. Then came back to ask us all to live in a way that invites others into the eternal race He has marked out for them.
A race is not a walk on the beach. There is sweat, pain and beseeching raining down from heaven.
Our bodies long for rest and peace, to lounge around and be complete. But for now, in this brief life, we are called to run, to fight back the plight of body, soul and mind.
And though the finish line seems inconceivable, it is out on the beyond. And someday soon we’ll get a crown of peace and a medal of Shalom.
Don’t lose hope! Each race is trot step-by-step. Even when you’re on a lonely stretch your soul can find solace in the creator of the universe who asks you to keep on keeping on, creating beauty out of the days granted to you this side of heaven.
Hallelujah, He doesn’t leave you to run it alone. Through the hills and the valleys you are not alone. His Spirit is an ever-present guide. His people fellow sojourners in this race to keep the faith.
When a runner faces a hill, she is trained to press in, to lean forward to create the least resistance. When the hill is steep, don’t push away, press in. Press into His presence. Press into your relationships with His people and then turn your eyes toward the mountain, because from Him, your help comes.
Choose today to run your race of faith because it matters--every step of it is full of impact and significance and beauty. Run with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. Let your soul delight in the author of the race course designed just for you.
Her family and friends know her as, Jaci. She is the wife of a pastor, a mom of four, writing and communications education instructor, a visionary and an avid runner. As a firm believer in the power and effectiveness of the body of Christ united together to live out the Great Commission, she holds fast to this verse, "Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations" (Matthew 28:19). Of equal importance to her are these words, "...let us run with endurance the race that is set before us" (Hebrews 12:1).
Posts in the Run for Your Life, series: