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, 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 has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2
I have always been fascinated by the marathon run in the Olympics. The runners run for very long distances to obtain a medal. All along the way there are those who cheer them on. The crowd rises to their feet as each one enters the stadium and applauds them. Even those who don’’t come in the top three are applauded. The marathon is a grueling race and some never finish, they drop out because of exhaustion. I remember seeing films of men who were so determined that to make it that they would almost have to crawl to make it across the finish line. To be a marathoner requires discipline and training. Without those 2 essentials they won’t last.
Being a Christian is like being a marathoner. It requires discipline and training. These come from spending time in God’’s word and in prayer. Without those 2 essentials it can be a long and agonizing race and many wind up dropping out. But for those who endure there is as the bible says a cloud of witnesses cheering us on. Those who have gone before us and obtained the crown.
Are you willing to do what it takes to win that race? It requires as Hebrews says that you lay aside every weight, and the sins that so easily ensnare us. What are the things that ensnare you? Are you willing to let them go? The prize is eternal life. It is ending that race by running into arms of Jesus.
Mark Schultz wrote a song called Cloud of Witnesses. It’s about a group of friends and their walk with the Lord. The last verse and chorus says; So when it comes the time that Heaven calls, they’’ll come running, to see the ones who’’ve gone before. Who ran the race and made the journey home. To find them waiting at the finish line cheering happily. They will run and they will see, a cloud of witnesses lined up on a street of gold as they run the final mile that leads them to the throne. And through that cloud of witnesses, they can see God upon that throne and as they fall into His arms they know their home in a cloud of witnesses. Lord Jesus we long for that day!
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