Finishing Our Race

Since we have such a huge crowd of men of faith watching us from the grandstands, let us strip off anything that slows us down or holds us back, and especially those sins that wrap themselves so tightly around our feet and trip us up; and let us run with patience the particular race that God has set before us. Hebrews 12:1 TLB

In times of darkness and confusion it is easy to lose our way. It doesn’t matter who you are, Elijah teaches us that it can happen to anyone–even someone who has been called, anointed, and used greatly by God.

There are circumstances for all of us that lead to a kind of emotional exhaustion, that can tackle any of us, and completely sidetrack or derail our purpose.

So… I have learned, beating yourself up doesn’t help.

It isn’t holy. It isn’t productive. And, it sure isn’t the Holy Spirit’s way of inspiring us.

Anyone can lose their way…

Anyone can trip and fall.

If you think so highly of yourself, that you believe what happened to Elijah couldn’t happen to you?

Uh-oh, you are headed for a certain confrontation with the enemy of your soul.

He just loves it, when we get so full of ourselves, we think he is no match for us!

Hebrews warns ALL of us…

Keep your eyes on Jesus, our leader and instructor. He was willing to die a shameful death on the cross because of the joy he knew would be his afterwards; and now he sits in the place of honor by the throne of God. hEBREWS 12:2 TLB

Yes, keep your eyes on Jesus.

  • Not others. (Not even your heroes.)
  • Not the enemy. (Remember, Jesus defeated him at the cross.)
  • And, not yourself. (We all blow it.)

The King James says,

Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Our calling and purpose were “authored” by Him, and He will have the Holy Spirit be the One to help us to finish what He began IN US.

We have His Word on it:

Philippians 1:3-6 in The Message says it like this,

(The Apostle Paul speaking to the Church)

Every time you cross my mind, I break out in exclamations of thanks to God. Each exclamation is a trigger to prayer. I find myself praying for you with a glad heart. I am so pleased that you have continued on in this with us, believing and proclaiming God’s Message, from the day you heard it right up to the present. There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in you would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears.

Isn’t that wonderful news?

The Holy Spirit’s purpose IN US is to bring our purpose to a flourishing finish!

Man! That is GOOD, GOOD, NEWS.

The older I get…

The more aware I am of my own weaknesses and frailty.

Not in an “oh-woe-is-me” kind of thing–but in a “sure-and-certain-knowledge” that,

“…apart from Him I can do nothing.”

Also, I am painfully aware of time and the clock!

It is James who warns us,

How do you know what is going to happen tomorrow? For the length of your lives is as uncertain as the morning fog—now you see it; soon it is gone. James 4:14 TLB

Our days are numbered the scripture teaches. None of us know for sure how many days on this planet we get.

Therefore, it behooves all of us to be busy about our Father’s business, especially now as we see the end approaching.

If we stumble; if we get sidetracked, or fall into discouragement and confusion, all we have to do is look up, and ask for Jesus to advocate for us.

I write this, dear children, to guide you out of sin. But if anyone does sin, we have a Priest-Friend in the presence of the Father: Jesus Christ, righteous Jesus. When he served as a sacrifice for our sins, he solved the sin problem for good—not only ours, but the whole world’s. 1 John 2 The Message

We don’t look inside, to our own strength, we ask for His!

I love you, God—
    you make me strong.
God is bedrock under my feet,
    the castle in which I live,
    my rescuing knight.
My God—the high crag
    where I run for dear life,
    hiding behind the boulders,
    safe in the granite hideout.

Psalm 18:1-2 The Message

His help is only a whimper or a whisper away.

As fast as we call out… HIS HELP IS ON THE WAY.

And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no weekend war that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels.

Ephesians 6:10-11 THE MESSAGE

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