“So take a new grip with your tired hands and strengthen your weak knees. Mark out a straight path for your feet so that those who are weak and lame will not fall but become strong.” — Hebrews 12:12-13 (NLT)
A phenomenon occurs for some athletes running a marathon known as a second wind. The runner is beyond the point of exhaustion, out of breath and unable to keep the pace, but suddenly finds the strength to continue. This can happen at various stages of the race depending on the individual, and there are no sure explanations as to why this occurs. Several opinions have been introduced medically, scientifically and psychologically to help bring some clarity, but it remains a mystery.
The Bible refers to the Christian life as running a race (Hebrews 12:1). It is also fair to say that our life is a marathon. Running in a consistent manner day after day throughout our lives is not without a couple of stumbles along the way. We are all subject to times of weakness, stumbling and running out of gas. The trials in life will sap our energy and knock us down.
But we are to be encouraged due to a second wind, which is available to every Christian. The writer of Hebrews puts it this way: “So take a new grip with your tired hands and strengthen your weak knees. Mark out a straight path for your feet so that those who are weak and lame will not fall but become strong” (Hebrews 12:12-13, NLT).
How do Christians get a more secure grip on tired hands and have their knees not buckle under? Is this second wind also a mystery? Well, sort of. All who have accepted Christ as Savior have in their possession the Holy Spirit. We may not know exactly how that occurs, but it is true. The Holy Spirit is there to guide us through this life marathon. He strengthens us in weak moments, provides much needed energy to keep going, and assures us that He will be with us right up to the finish line.
Getting a second wind while running a marathon is having those knees and legs strengthen, keep moving, not stumble, and finish the race. Even a race you have trained for, and are giving your best effort in, sometimes needs a little extra push from a mysterious source. Getting a second wind in the marathon of life simulates the marathon runner in every way — except the Christian running in life’s marathon can be sure that the second wind, the Holy Spirit, will be there.
— Loring Schultz
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