Thursday, December 05, 2013


I really enjoy endurance athletics for lots of reasons, but one of them is learning about perseverance. Participants really learn how to keep going when they feel like quitting, especially when they feel like quitting. Perseverance. What drives them? Amongst several things, the reward of finishing.

One of my favorite passages is Hebrews 12:1-3, where the image is about persevering in running. The writer wants his readers, who are struggling and wanting to quit, to know many are cheering them on, encouraging them to persevere.

Ultimately he holds up Jesus as the example. Because he knew the reward of finishing his course, he was able to endure the pain of the course. Here’s Hebrews 12:1-3

Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls!

My prayer for you today, especially if you are in the midst of giving up on something you shouldn’t, is you will find the strength to continue. Listen to those around you encouraging you to continue, and look to Jesus. Persevere!

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