New Devotion: Run Your Race

I wrote the following devotion this past fall, and it was featured last month. I hope it encourages you now as we navigate COVID–19, for its topic is timely. 

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, 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. —Hebrews 12:1

My oldest son started Cross Country this fall at school. He did not perform as he had hoped at his first meet. The course was flooded with children who were older and unknown to him. The distance was double what he had been running. He didn’t know the trail. When his body started aching after his initial sprint, he decided to walk the course with friends. He finished the race frustrated with his placement.

As a mom who used to run Cross Country competitively, I encouraged him to stick to his sport choice because it would get better. The fall is a magical time to run outside as the leaves crunch under your feet, I said. Running is great cross training for other sports and promotes life fitness. Further, it releases natural endorphins that make you feel good. Despite these attractive reasons, he reminded me that there was still the pain.

Cross Country holds true to the motto, “No pain, no gain.” It’s difficult to build endurance. I remember pushing through painful cramps in my side, lungs that hurt from breathing cold air, spit that felt like Saran Wrap in my mouth, and legs that were so gassed that they wobbled. It would have been easier to walk, and some runners on race day make that choice.

That’s why Paul’s metaphor of running a race in our passage is so powerful. He encourages his readers to “run with perseverance the race marked out” for them. Living a life of faith will require perservance, sometimes right when we want to give up or walk...

Continue reading about how running teaches us to 
persevere by faith here

Author's note: While Hebrews is traditionally attributed to Paul, as reflected in my devotion, its official authorship has been debated by Bible scholars.
Also, if you need a laugh as you persevere, I hope you watch Christian artist Matthew West's hilarious new single, "Quarantine Life!" Stay safe, everyone!


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