We are all runners in this race called life with the ultimate goal of making it to the finish line. That place where we can stop and finally say “I made it!”.The finish line only comes when we die, but the truth is many of us drop out of the race long before we cross that line.
“Many people die at twenty-five and aren’t buried until they are seventy-five.” – Benjamin Franklin
Just like Benjamin Franklin’s quote above, many people are buried at seventy-five but they have died a long time ago, and in the same way many people are supposed to cross the finish line when they die, but in reality they have stopped running altogether and have given up long before they reached the end.
What is it that stops us from running the race?
From living life to the fullest with God?
From making it to the end without giving up on what God has called us to do?
There are a few things.
Just like any good runner, sometimes we get plain tired from running day after day.
We become weary and burdened by the trials of this life.
We get weighed down with worries and we can barely find the strength to put one foot in front of the other.
When you are at this place of complete exhaustion, when you don’t have the energy to keep on doing what you’re doing don’t lose faith.
Come to Jesus, lay your worries, your burdens, and your fears at His feet and allow Him to give you the rest that you need for tomorrow, the strength that you need for one more day and He will re-energize you and help you feel ready to keep on running once again (Matthew 11:28)
Sometimes we find ourselves distracted by the things of this world that try to grab our attention, appeal to our selfish desires, and make us stop living for God and start living for our own fleshly wants (1 John 12:15-17).
We get sidetracked by what is going on around us, by this temporary world that will one day fade away, and forget to run to the finish line that is ahead of us, toward the heaven that is awaiting us.
When you find yourself stopping to pause, to indulge in the things of this world, to pursue empty pleasures that will always leave you unsatisfied turn to the only One that can satisfy you and ask Him to help re-direct your focus back to where it belongs: on Him and on the finish line ahead of you.
Sometimes we compare ourselves to others in the race and we feel like we are not running as fast as they are, we are not as successful as they seem to be in life, and compared to them we don’t seem like we are getting far.
We are tempted to stop and give up because we feel like we’re always running behind.
But whether or not you are running ahead of people or behind them, whether or not they seem to be doing more or less, going slower or faster it doesn’t matter. God is very clear that we are never supposed to compare our lives to anyone else’s (2 Corinthians 10:12) whether it’s in ministry, in personal matters, or in any aspect of life. Each one of us has our own race to run and we are wasting our time if we keep looking to the people who are running ahead of us or behind us.
God won’t be asking you about how well they ran their race. He will be asking you how well you ran yours.
Sometimes we become unmotivated and purposeless and we forget what the point of the race even is.
We forget why we are running in the first place.
Why we give our time and effort to certain causes.
Why we wake up every morning and live each day.
We see how far ahead the finish line is and we wonder if it’s worth the effort to keep on running.
To keep on going through the trials, the tribulations, and the pain.
When you are in this place where you don’t see the point of running anymore remember that as long as you are alive God has a purpose for you to fulfill (Psalm 138:8).
He has a call for you to make disciples of all nations, to spread the gospel everywhere you go, to be His light in the world (Matthew 28:16-20).
He has an eternity waiting for you at the end that is worth the pain you are suffering right now (Romans 8:18).
It is worth your energy, your effort, and your time to keep on doing those things that will make a difference in eternity.
Those things that will draw others to Jesus.
Those things that will motivate others to continue their own race of faith.
Maybe you don’t see the fruit of your labor today, the reward for your hard work, the results of your endless prayers, but believe me… when you get to heaven, you will!
And once you are there you will sure be glad that you kept on running the race.
Where are you at today?
Are you running with endurance or have you stopped halfway?
Have you been too exhausted to keep going?
Too distracted to stay focused on the finish line?
Too discouraged to stay motivated until the end?
Take a break and come before Jesus.
Ask Him to remind you once again why it’s worth it to make it to the end.
Don’t drop out of the race when the going gets tough, when strength runs low, when dreams seem out of sight.
Don’t allow the purpose and potential God created you to live for to die at twenty-five when you still have so many more years to go, so many more miles to run, so many more obstacles to overcome, and so many more bridges to cross.
Set aside everything that keeps you from running and keep going one more day no matter what stands in your way.
Make it to that finish line.
In the end you will find your ultimate rest with Jesus.
But until then, run the race of faith.
Be blessed! Anna… ♥
“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” – Hebrews 12:1