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… Hebrews 12:1 (ESV)
I’ve run several races in my day, the most fun being those surrounded by friends encouraging me to do my best. I’m no pro athlete by any stretch of the imagination, but I enjoy the comradery and the rush of pushing my limits on a course. One thing I’ve notices in my travels is how important pace is in any running strategy. You see, I can’t keep up with the very fast runners, and I wouldn’t want to spend the entire time walking. I have my own pace.
The Apostle Paul encourages us right after his famous “Hall of Faith” in Hebrews 11 to run our race with endurance. We may feel like our faith journey can’t possibly compete with the heroes of yesteryear. It’s easy to become discouraged in our faith when we consider all of the mighty men and women who have gone before us, but we must keep our own pace.
When my buddy Rob and I trained together for a color run my last year of college, we made it a point to set realistic goals for race times. We finished a solid middle-of-the-pack, but were overjoyed at our performance. Rob and I didn’t plan to keep up with the speedsters at the head of the race, but we didn’t relegate ourselves to plodding slowly along either.
We ran our race with endurance, and encouraged each other every step of the way. Similarly, I’d like to encourage you in your walk with Christ to examine His plan for your race. We might not all lead crusades, play worship services, or write books. We are, however, called to run our own race.
This month we’ve been rallying around the Chi Alpha Minority Mobilization Fund campaign, and I see clearly diversity is God’s way of covering all the bases. In establishing the churches of the first century, Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 9:22-23 (ESV) he tries to be “all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. I do it all for the sake of the gospel….”
We are all called to something holy, something special. The diverse skillsets, cultures, and backgrounds in our fellowship are a gift from God that we might reach all people groups. God has an amazing plan for your life, and it is up to you to run your race with endurance. Oh, and those intimidating fathers of the faith? They are cheering you on! Having finished their race, they now watch full of hope as we continue the Lord’s work on the earth.
I’d like to take a minute and honor one of Chi Alpha’s mighty men, Donnie Moore, who recently finished his race and went on to be with Jesus. I heard stories of his ministry from people he had influenced through the years, and this past December Donnie was the featured speaker at South Central SALT 2017.
His passion for reaching young people inspired many of us across the nation, and I’m proud to serve in the same organization he contributed to for so many years. My heart rejoices to think of all the seeds sown throughout the years and the next generation of faithful servants.
Run your race, friends. You never know who will find encouragement in your faithfulness!
For more information about the Minority Mobilization Fund, check out www.chialpha.com/mmf.
For more information about the life and ministry of Donnie Moore, check out www.donniemooreministries.org.