Most of us are runners. Jumping out of bed in the morning, our first action of the day is like that of an athlete staring up at a scoreboard—we peer at the clock. From our first waking second, we hop onto a treadmill of activity, bustling through our days at breakneck speed. Our running isn’t just about the rate at which we hurtle through life, but in the priorities that we set.
We chase after goals of achievement and accumulation, and insist that we haven’t got time to engage in “unproductive” activities like strolls in the park, long evenings of giggling chatter with vintage friends, bedtime games with children or grandchildren, or the luxury of a long bath and a book. We’re runners.
Eugene Peterson, capturing the passion of Paul in his writing to Timothy, has the veteran athlete/apostle declare, “This is the only race worth running” (The Message). As we’ll see, this is a theme that Paul repeated.
Participating in the Christian marathon is a priceless privilege and has eternal consequences. It’s a trek, a run with Jesus going ahead as our example and yet alongside us with His daily presence: a race with a stadium full of forerunners whose own stories of perseverance and faith show us that we’re in a noble line. Compared with this, Paul considered everything else as garbage (Phil. 3:8).
It’s race day, and our turn has come. Right at the beginning of our journey in this theme, let’s affirm that even when the going is tough, and the track suddenly banks into an unexpected uphill climb, the journey we take is truly the only one worth taking.
Pray: Lord, help me to run, not after that which doesn’t matter or count, but to run as a winner in Your eyes.