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.
Before you get to excited, I’m afraid this post may mislead some of you. It’s not about the physical act of running. I apologize to those whose interest were peaked, but I am not a runner. I did run one 5K several years ago, but that was it. The rest of the 5ks were a combination of walking, light jogging, and laughter with friends. To those of you who are dedicated runners, I applaud you. I have always admired those I see running in parks or on sidewalks showing such will power. I wish I had that desire or even discipline to proceed in getting my cardio in a few times a week by running. The fact that I feel like a baby elephant galloping at the speed of a tortoise just doesn’t give me the motivation I need.
What I really want to discuss is the action of turning away or going in the opposite direction from something or someone. I am referring to the habit of running from God and the call he has placed on your heart. Surely I cannot be alone in this. Maybe it’s starts off as a walk, and then a trot, occasionally glancing back, and then it turns into steady jog, with eyes focused only on the direction you are heading. I probably sound like a broken record because oftentimes this is brought up in my posts. Apparently, I am pretty good at it so I guess in one sense, yes I am a runner, just not in the physical sense. I do it often, especially with my call to write. God has put writing on my heart and looking back many years ago is when then first domino fell, and then another, and so on. Opportunities and moments that popped up here and there where I was given a chance to express my thoughts using my words. The thing is, as much as I enjoy it, I also have a tendency to avoid it at all cost. Why do I give God such push back? There are many reasons I could give, but they are all just excuses. Not one would stand in merit. I can come up with any outlandish or silly justification to not sit down and and give it the time writing requires and needs. I also have learned that when God puts a topic on my heart, he wants me to write it down then. Not later. When later comes, the thought has passed and unfortunately it may not come again. Obedience is what he requires and it is an area I am still lacking in. Focus….yet another skill I need to hone in on. Let’s not forget discipline. I also am aware that I have an enemy who loves to entertain me with an abundance of shiny, pretty distractions, anything to get me not to pick up that pen or my laptop. Too often, I fall for his plight.
Just like with any physical exercise, the more you practice it, the better you become at it and the stronger your skill set will be. The same is with the gifts that he gives us. We must use our gifts to help strengthen them and grow our faith. They will be useless tucked away, unnoticed. By shying away from them, you have no idea how you are robbing yourself and others from a blessing. Most importantly God cannot get glory if we leave our gifts on a shelf, unopened and unused. They will just sit there collecting dust. If we don’t follow his leading, he will use others who will. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to intentionally let God down. Now don’t get me wrong, I fail him daily being stuck in this sinful flesh, but I never want to purposely defy God. I shudder at that thought today, even though looking at my past, there was a period where I did just that. All I can say is thank God for forgiveness and second chances, and in some cases multiple chances.
Can I encourage you to step out in what God is calling you to do? What has he purposed on your heart that has you rocking back and forth in an imaginary chair in your comfy zone. You want to stand up in faith, but yet trying to release your grip on the chair just seems impossible. Maybe even overwhelming. The chair may represent your security or your safe haven. You may even be thinking, why would I let go of my security to step out into unknown territory which is a place where you see nothing but fear, doubt, and questions. I believe God has so much more for us to live and experience in this life, but we miss out on most of it. Instead of running from his calling, I pray you embrace it. May he give you the faith you need to take the next step. May he replace your fears with the assurance that he has called you to do this and will be with you every step of the way. Put on the full armor of God, and do not be surprised when the enemy flings arrows your way. Satan doesn’t want you to be obedient, but he wants you stuck in your fears, never getting up off that seat. He likes it when we become complacent. He is a liar too, so don’t listen to the discouragement he will send your way.
If your gonna run, run to God. I promise you he will be there with arms spread wide. Acknowledge the purpose he has placed inside of you, pray about it, then go after it! You are more than enough, because of who you belong to, to achieve great things for his kingdom.
In all we do, to God be the Glory.
Keep moving forward,