Our verse for today comes from Hebrews 12:1, ” Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. ”
Picture yourself as a track athlete at the Olympics. It has come time for your event, and the stadium is full of people who are there to watch you run the marathon. And these are not just any spectators, these are all past champions, greats of the track & field world, who have gone through the training and the agony to ultimately break the tape at the finish line. They are there to cheer you on through whatever you may encounter from the starting gun to the finish line. As you start your race, you glance into the crowd and recognize a few of the faces. You know some parts of their stories, how they seemed so unlikely to become a runner, much less to be one of the best. And that reminds you of someone you know all too well.
Your own past is not the stuff of which legends are made. Too many times you barely give your best effort. You have so many interests that it’s hard to focus on just one, so becoming a champion never crosses your mind. But these witnesses, you recall, had plenty of bad days. Their own strength and intentions didn’t seem to get them very far. But somehow they made it. That faith they had must have been locked into had an amazing source. One who kept lifting them up when they failed, encouraging them when the days trek seemed to go more backwards than forwards.
These witnesses have been through it all, simply because they believed the promise that they were given at the beginning. Their glorious king waits for them on the other side of the finish line. The weight that slows us down, the distractions that hinder our training, the snares and traps of sin that might make us think we’re losers, they all are overcome by enduring the race He has placed us in. The Grand Champion, Jesus, is the power of your faith. Know that there is nothing that He cannot overcome.
As we seek Him today, remember what God has done for you already. Think about what He did for you even yesterday. And if yesterday was a tough day, remember those witnesses and set your sights on the prize.