My First Blog Post

            The Christian life is not a quick sprint to the prize. It is an endurance race. There are obstacles.         My two sons are running a 5K race. The race  is September 7. It will be run in Hugo, Minnesota. But  this is not your “normal” type of 5K race. It is called, “The Warrior Dash." The three plus mile course contains obstacles…twenty obstacles to be exact.         I went to the website for this warrior dash. There was a map of the course. There were also pictures and descriptions of the obstacles the competitors will face. There will be mud. Running in mud has its challenges. The runners will encounter cliffs. They will  run through trenches and scale ledges. They will have to climb peaks and go through valleys. This is not your everyday fun run. I wish my sons luck, and I will offer up a prayer.         I was talking to my younger son, Jon, a few  days ago. He told me they were having T-shirts made for the event. The shirts will have two Scripture references stenciled on them. One will be Psalm 27, Jon's  favorite Bible passage. The other reference will be Hebrews 12:1.         He quizzed me. He asked me if I knew, without looking, what Hebrews 12:1 says. Sure. “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses…let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”         He commended me and then gently reminded me that I had left out a key part of the verse. “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.”       I had left out the part about throwing off sin and everything that hinders. More than once running a race is used in Scripture as a metaphor for following Jesus. Following Jesus is not a quick sprint to the prize. It is an endurance race. There are obstacles.         We must rid ourselves of those things that weigh us down and slow us down. Sin. Yeah. We know we need to rid ourselves of sin. But what about “everything that hinders”? What are some of those things that hinder? I'm sure we could all come up with a list. On my list would be regrets, hurt feelings. They can weigh me down and get me off course. Discouragement is a big one. Ever feel discouraged? What a weight that can be. And it hinders.         As followers of Jesus, we have a race to run. The going may get slow at times. There will be times when it may feel we are at the edge. There will be peaks, but we will also have to negotiate some valleys. Let's rid ourselves of all that stuff that hinders…and run.        Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the Pioneer 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. (Hebrews 12:2)  Grace and Peace,  Pastor Dan 

Leave a Reply