Running the Race

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Hebrews 12:1-2 Let us run with endurance the long race set before us. Now stay focused on Jesus, who designed and perfected our faith…

This scripture has been an encouragement and a challenge for me. The running part was easy, keeping my eyes on Jesus not so easy. I thought about this challenge as I was reading a recent letter from John Eldredge. In it he writes:

“As I fight through the battles of this world, my eyes aren’t normally fixed on Jesus. I do look in his direction but far more my eyes are fixed on the crisis before me. I received bad news about a friend who is going through a heinous battle with cancer and as I prayed for him I did not feel confident, assured, or triumphant. I felt discouraged and distressed….my gaze was fixed on the suffering.

Looking to Jesus we see him facing difficult situations with prayer, never losing his focus, what was the secret in his prayers? In feeding the five thousand Jesus took the loaves and fishes and “looking up into heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves”.  When he stands before Lazarus tomb, preparing to raise him, it says, “then Jesus looked up and said, “Father I thank you that you have heard me” Mark 6:41; John 11:41

The secret? Jesus was not trying to recall something he forgot. He looks up to heaven and gives thanks. He is orienting himself to what is most true in the world. He is not focusing on

The impossible inadequate resources for the need of five thousand

Lazarus’s sisters grief (they were his friends)

Not even the finality of death with a stone rolled over the tomb

He turns his gaze from all the evidence that suggests otherwise and fixes it on his Father God and his resources. It is human nature to look at the problem before us, the crisis that caused us to pray. But the thing that will help our prayer life is to learn to fix our eyes on Jesus.”*

Just like it says in Hebrews 12:2.

 Now stay focused on Jesus, who designed and perfected our faith. He endured the cross and ignored the shame of that death because He focused on the joy that was set before Him; and now He is seated beside God on the throne, a place of honor.

As we encourage ourselves by remembering where our focus should be, we need to remember to encourage those who are running with us. Those who are tired and stumbling, weary, thinking of turning back. We need to encourage one another to refuse to let the attacks, the danger, and temptation that is all around take our focus off of Him.

Father God help us to focus on Jesus, the One who encourages us to keep on running, even when the waves are high, the storms fierce. Help us Jesus to keep our eyes on You, knowing you love us, that you go before us, that will not leave or forsake us. Knowing that You as the designer and perfecter of our faith, will complete in us what you have started.

Help us to run and endure, and pray knowing you hear us, with thankful hearts for all You have done.

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Thanks to John Eldredge at http://www.RANSOMEDHEART.com

*From February/March letter Ransomed Heart- John Eldredge

About HCliffCraig.com

“Now at last they were beginning chapter One of the great story no one on earth has read: which goes on forever”. I love this line at the end of the Last Battle by C.S. Lewis. Everyone has a story to tell and ultimately we are all part of a greater story that someday will be revealed in full. “ For now, we can only see a dim and blurry picture of things”. ( 1 Corinthians 13:12). My story is not remarkable, although the events I have had the privilege in my life to witness have been. I grew up in the south “the land of cotton” and the old times there were definitely not forgotten. I remember where I was and what I was doing when JFK and Martin Luther King were murdered in Dallas and in Memphis. I remember the Civil Rights movement, a time of great unrest and change. I remember the dawning of the “Age of Aquarius” in the late 1960’s. It was also the dawning of my love for playing music, a love that has stayed with me throughout my life. If my life were chapters in a book one would tell of my precious bride of 20+ years who endured so much and stood beside me through the good and the bad. One would describe the blessings of being a father and a grandfather. One would tell about how despite being “the wretch” the song sings about God was able to change me, and use me to make a difference in others lives, make me a servant in His church, and surround me with friends all because of His goodness. All part of a story that has had many twists and turns. I think of the words Jimmy Buffet wrote in one of my favorite songs "As a dreamer of dreams and a travelin’ man I have chalked up many a mile Read dozens of books about heroes and crooks And I learned much from both of their styles" And so it is true for me. But in all of my travels and all I have read and experienced nothing compares to where I am headed. The place where my story here ends and the story that goes on forever begins! "" I am confident that He who began a good work in you will carry it on until completion until the day He returns". Philippians 1:6 My hope is that as we all run our race that in some small way my words will encourage and speak to you, as your story is being written. And draw you ever closer to the One who loves you. Further up and further in!
This entry was posted in A CLICK A BLESSING TODAY, CHRISTIAN NUGGETS, CHRISTIAN TAGALOG BLOGS, CHRISTIAN TEENS BLOGS, SHARING STRUGGLES, TAPESTRY TREASURES and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Running the Race

  1. Pingback: My Article Read (3-26-2015) | My Daily Musing

  2. ptl2010 says:

    O how we need the Lord in this race

  3. Megan says:

    Oh i love this! Ive been studying philippians so this idea of pressing on towards the goal – running rhe race has been on my heart!

    • Thank you Megan I am so happy this was an encouragement to you. Thanks for your kind comments and for visiting my blog. We are all called to run this race and finish well, but we cannot do it alone. We need His strength and courage and we need one another.

  4. Father Paul Lemmen says:

    Reblogged this on A Conservative Christian Man.

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