Sunday, January 15, 2012

Running the Race

"Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us." Hebrews 12:1

This post is written by Paul Nyquist, president of Moody Bible Institute

Some runners are sprinters. Some run marathons. And just as valid - some runners just stay at it. The Olympic committee will not be calling them, pleading for their participation. Their names will never be listed as the top finishers in any category of the Boston Marathon.

But God is pleased with them.

They are doing what He expects of them... they are staying in the race. The writer of Hebrews urges us, "Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us..." (Hebrews 12:1).

The key word to God's pleasure is endurance. The biblical word is perseverance - the ability to stay under pressure and keep doing what you have committed yourself to doing, when you feel like it and when you don't. Faith gets you started in the Christian life, but perseverance keeps you going.

When your decision to follow Christ is far in the rearview mirror, perseverance will keep your eyes on the prize: the pleasure in God's eyes as you keep running.

Like Paul wrote in Philippians 3: 13-14: "But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." I press on - that's perseverance.

It's okay to admit you're tired or hurting. Just don't give up. You've got a wonderful prize that awaits you at the end of the race: Jesus Himself. Look to Him. He stands at the finish line, along with the "great cloud of witnesses," cheering you on (Hebrews 12:1).

Listen - do you hear them? Don't give up. Run with endurance! See you at the finish line!

Keep running the race,

J. Paul Nyquist, Ph.D.