“Run the race set before you, Phyllis” were the words I heard boldly shouted out to me from the sideline as I took off running a 5k this past Labor Day. My heart was uplifted and encouraged…both for the immediate run and for the long-term faith race I run daily.
A footrace always seems to remind me of the faith race. Not everyone who should be in the race is at the starting line. Many sit and only watch from the sidelines. Some have no idea a race is in progress. The ones who seem to do best are those who have been preparing themselves in the days, weeks and months prior to the run. But… even those who just barely get by in their efforts ‘win’ as they cross the finish line!
I love that the person who called out to me at the start of the race was also one who (because he was/is a champion runner) runs to various corners throughout the race to ‘cheer’ people on. What an encouragement! And that same guy is at the finish line beaming and telling people he knew that they could make it! (He has usually run many more miles the day of the race than most people run in a week but he says nothing about that.)
The enthusiasm and joy that exude from this one forty-something guy cheering others on amazes me. He was once deep into a life of sin and turmoil. He lost everything that people hold dear. But…he came to God and began the faith race. Ten years later, he is still going strong and encouraging others…both with footraces and faith!!
“Since we have such a huge crowd of people of faith watching us from the grandstands, let us strip off anything that slows us down or holds us back, and especially those sins that wrap themselves so tightly around our feet and trip us up; and let us run with patience the particular race that God has set before us.”
(Hebrews 12:1 The Living Bible)
God has restored and filled this man to overflowing and he is running the race set before him. So I say to you today, “Run the race set before you”! God Himself will bring you across the finish line saying “Well done”.