“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” — Hebrews 12:1–2
Run the Race
When we think about races, we tend to think mostly about speed. And so often, that is the case. Someone running the 100m has little to think about pacing, mapping out the course, or making sure they can finish strong. In a marathon, however, so much of the race strategy revolves around those specific things.
To run a marathon, one has to endure. It is absolutely necessary. And as most of us have learned, our life is a marathon, not a sprint. And so a life of endurance is not only beneficial, but necessary to walk (and run) in the ways that God has called us to. What do these verses have to say about endurance?
The Call to Endurance
Because life is a marathon and not a sprint, our life of following Christ is one of being faithful, not fast. Faithful in laying aside the weight we are carrying, whether it be sin that is weighing us down, worry that is preoccupying our hearts and minds, or the temptation to give up. Can you imagine running a race with additional weight on your shoulders? We are called to lay these aside as we run.
The Fuel For Our Endurance
How can we endure? We look to Jesus. Not at our troubles, not at our circumstances, not at what the world defines as success, but receiving the power to endure by looking to the founder and perfecter of our faith. He is the One who has set this race before us. He is the One who knows the path forward. If there was anyone worthy of our trust, wouldn’t it be the One who has created and mapped out our race?
The Picture of Endurance
As we look to Jesus, we see the model and the picture of what it means to endure. And thank God He did! Enduring the cross, despising the shame, for the joy that was set before Him. His Heavenly Father had set the cross before Him, and He was called to endure through a trust and faith in His Heavenly Father.
If Jesus can endure the God-ordained path of the cross that was set before Him, and He is now seated at the right hand of God, then we can trust that what God is calling us to do will also be for our benefit, and for His glory.
— Chris Kelty
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