Think of life as a race. This race is tough and exhausting. Constantly you think about giving up, you think about just throwing in the towel. Everyone else seems to be passing you by and the further you go the more unattainable prize seems to be. But there actually is a prize at the end and it is worth it; the prize is Jesus. Jesus is the big trophy at the end that you feel so much joy you lift it over your head to show the world. But what makes this race different from any other race, is that no one has ever gotten the prize alone, it’s always a shared victory. That’s a foreign thought right? A race is meant to have one winner, not two, not a group, just one! But this is far from any normal race. It’s actually unlike any other race you have ever heard of. It’s meant to be run with obstacles, with times where you just want to quit, when you think “I don’t even know if there is a prize.” But the prize is worth every bit of it. We need things to run with, we need people to run with, people who are willing to throw you on their back when the going gets tough. Now, I would love to take credit for this concept, but I didn’t come up with this. It actually comes from the Bible. Take a read….
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”
But what’s holding us back? Why is the race so hard? The answer is truly anything that holds you back from running as fast as you can, and as passionately as you can is the reason why you can’t run. To sum it up it’s just sin. It’s the three-letter word that has been hanging over your head your whole life. But really the problem isn’t the runner, the problem is what or who, the runner lets into their race. Well what even is sin? I hear so many times the question “Well is it a sin to do ______” You fill in the blank. You know what goes in your blank, or rather blanks. I know what goes in mine… The answer to the question is not a matter of right or wrong, it isn’t a matter of what the bible says specifically on a subject, it’s a matter of Does it help me run? Or does it make me want to just fall and quit. Does it entangle me, or does it bring hope. Does whatever it is in my life make me prone to fix my eyes on the perfecter of faith or stray away? To you this could be a place, this could be a person, and this could really be anything.
Remember back when I said “Does it help you run?” odds are a face popped up in your head, a boyfriend/girlfriend, a place, but something popped up. That is a good indication of putting a finger on your own entanglements. However, what I think is the one thing holding you back more than any other could be yourself. That’s what it is for me, I struggle daily with the idea of someone talking bad about me, I fear missing out on fun parties, hangouts, beach trips, etc. Fear of other people plagues me every day; I become consumed with what people think about me. I do this every day, every time I go to school, every time I go on social media, that why this is a daily battle. These thoughts lead me to lose sight of what I think of myself, and what God thinks of me. What I am saying is you need to do what is best for your race. Truth is I don’t know what is best for your race, I know what mine is. You know what yours is.
So why? What I can almost assure you is that in 5 years, taking off your entanglements and running passionately now, will be the best investment you ever make in yourself.
All I ask you to do is ask yourself this “Does it help me run.” That’s it. No radical life changes, just ask it, and see where it goes.
My prayer for you is that one day, you can proudly triumph the victory stated in 2 Timothy 4:7 “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have kept in faith.”