In some schools, in recent years, when it comes to competing there has been a popular saying: ‘it is not about winning, but it is all about taking part that counts’. But come on let’s face it can you imagine the Olympic and World Champion Usain Bolt declaring, ‘It’s taking part that really matters to me!’ I think not.
We all know when an athlete trains he does so to be the best. His intention when he gets on the field is to win. Thankfully in the race of life we can all anticipate being winners. For as we journey on this race of life, it is not about being first but rather it is all about running well in order to obtain the prize. And as Hebrews 12:1 encourages us we can only do this when we drop off every weight that could hinder our success.
Hebrews 12:1 also goes on to encourage us that in running a good race the most important quality to have is endurance: ‘let us run with endurance the race God has set before us’ (Hebrews 12:1). That’s because it is one thing to start a race, but maintaining stamina to complete it is a totally different thing. Yet, as this scripture continues, there is only one thing we need to do in order to complete a successful race – simply by ‘keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith’.
If we do this we too will be able to join Paul in saying ‘I have finished the race…. And now the prize awaits me – the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me on the day of his return’. (2 Tim 4:7-8, NLT)
So run a good race. Run with the intent to win the prize in order to hear: you ran a good race my faithful servant.
Picture credit: [run well]