Just as the chilly, cold weather was sinking into the earth on the east cost, the sun popped back out to lift our spirits.
On my way home from work I decided that it was just too beautiful to go inside and hibernate. Inside of doing my planned workout in our basement, I decided to go for a run.
(Which made me feel better about later making these…)
As I jogged around our neighborhood admiring the fall décor that covered front doors and lawns, fatigue began to set in (after like, 5 minutes) and begged me to slow down to a stroll.
I knew that I needed to push myself; I reminded myself that I would not grow in strength or endurance if I quit every time it got hard.
This battle between my flesh and my mind got me thinking about the journey, or race, that I am in everyday as a Christian, or follower of Christ.
I know this comparison to the Christian faith is nothing new. But I had one of those “ah-ha” moments that reminded me once again about the life I am called to live, as a child of God.
The life style that I committed to living, when I chose to give my life to Christ in return for what He did for me on the cross, is not always an easy one. Some days, many days, I am tempted to just do what I want; say what I want; live for myself; not think of anyone else; refuse to give any thought to consequences of my sin. On those days, I just want to “walk”, so to speak. I want to take it easy, have no one to answer to, and be like the other walkers, who seem to have it easy.
Then I am reminded by God’s grace that going along my own path, at my own pace, is an unguided path; void of direction. I am left to my self to guess what the correct way to go is, and slowly but surely, I find myself lost. Confused. Isolated by ignorance with no one to blame but my own stubbornness. I look a little closer and see that although this path may seem easy, it does nothing good in the long run for the walkers along the way.
The path God calls me on is a lengthy one. It may appear daunting at the lack of short cuts, but I soon find that it is a straight path that keeps me out of the dark and in the light. Although I tire along the way, God calls out for me to keep going; keep pushing onward, promising that I will learn and grow stronger as I trust Him and obey.
He gives me strength when I run low, and extends a hand when I fall down. I find that I only stumble when I begin to look to the side, envying the path off in the distance that appears more desirable. I lose track of the goal ahead and my feet trip me up.
But when I fall on my face, my Coach picks me right back up with love, tenderness, and grace. He dusts off my bruised knees and hands and says “Trust Me child, all that you gain in me is worth the cost.”
The path God calls us to take as we run this race in life, is not a popular one. Sometimes you feel a lone and often times you feel hated. But we are never alone, and we are always loved by a big, big God.
We all are living for and moving towards something. And in the end, we will have to give an account for what we chose as our goal.
Is it ourselves? Or is it Christ?
“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. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” Hebrews 12:1-3