Jessica Albritton, Girls Minister, LHBC
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, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
At the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona the world saw one of the greatest moments in history. In the semi-finals during the 400 meter race Derek Redmond, the projected winner of the gold medal, was just one final turn from the finish line when he suddenly felt a sharp pain in the back of his leg and fell on the track. He had torn a muscle in his right leg. The crowd all jolted to attention and medical attendants started to run towards him. Redmond struggled to his feet and began to hop toward the finish line on one foot in an attempt to finish the race. Jim Redmond, his father, jumped to attention and bolted towards his son. When he reaches his son Jim tells Derek, “You don’t have to do this,” Derek’s response, “Yes, I do,”. “Well, then… we’re going to finish this together.” And they did. At first the crowd watched in silence. But after a while the crowd began to rise from their seats and started cheering. Derek Redmond didn’t win the gold medal that day, but the entire world watched him finish his race.
In Hebrews chapter 12 believers are encouraged that our walk with Christ is like a race set before us. Scripture tells us we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses. Witnesses like Abraham and Moses, David, Sarah, and Joseph. Mighty men and women of God who sought the Lord and lived diligently to make Him known with their lives! We can look to them as examples in the pages of scripture and know that we too can run faithfully just as they did.
And they are not just examples to look to, scripture tells us they are surrounding us, cheering us on as we run. Though the race may be long and grueling, though we may face many obstacles and hardships, we can be encouraged knowing that we are not running in vain.
And not just that, but like Derek Redmond’s dad, who left his seat in the crowd in order to run the race with his son, we too have a Savior who loved us enough to leave His throne room in Heaven in order to run with us in our race too! When the pain is too great, when life gets too hard, we can rest assured that He is with us, running alongside. In Matthew 28:20 Jesus reminds believers He will be with us always, even to the end of the age. We are never alone, never forsaken. Friend, whatever you’re going through, know that He is with you, know that He is for you, and know that He loves you with a love that is unfathomable. Keep running!
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Heavenly Father, You are so good even when life is not. You are with us even when we feel alone. Thank You for the encouragement and reminders that we are surrounded with. Lord, help me to run the race set before me. Lord, help me to finish well! In Jesus name, amen!
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock.