Do you believe in coincidences? I prefer to think of them as God moments. To me those coincidences are reminders of God’s hand at work in my life. I like to think of those coincidences as His attention-getting tools. He’s pretty clever that way.
Recently I received an email that contained a graphic with the word, endurance.
I contemplated it for a minute and then was off to the next email. Later in the day a good friend left a comment on Facebook with a scripture verse. It was there that the word endurance popped out at me, again.
Have you ever given much thought to the word endurance?
Usually I think about it in the realm of sports. Especially in terms of running a race like a triathlon or marathon. I’ve been learning about endurance…in a different way. Waiting.
You see, in our culture, we’re supposed to strive to make our way to the top. We are do-it-yourselfers. Whenever something is awry and needs to be fixed in any way….we fix it. I confess… I’m a fixer. I know how to make things happen. I try to fix… things, events, relationships, you name it. As good as all that is, sometimes it’s not God’s way.
These Bible verses came mind:
…let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.
As I meditated on these verses I became acutely aware that my fixing, my striving, is a weight. It ‘trips’ me up from running or waiting with endurance. When we run with endurance we keep moving, we don’t stop. My striving causes me to slow down…even stop.
The apostle Paul (the one who penned the verses above) was pretty specific about what gives us the capacity to endure; keeping our eyes on Jesus. I know that. I get that. No questions here. However, sometimes we are not faithful to do just that. We let other things get in the way.
We need to remember… Jesus has already finished the race. HE IS the champion!
This next portion of the verse is the part I had been missing. It tells us who Jesus is.
We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus,
the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.
Paul says, Jesus is the champion.
We are in a race where the champion has already been declared.
Jesus, OUR champion, is the one who initiates and perfects our faith.
- He’s the one who sets the race for us.
- He’s the one who gives us everything we need to endure the race, and…
- He declares it finished when He decides.
What does that mean for you and me in real life?
Having the endurance to wait or run is about trusting God… not ourselves. We must keep our eyes on Jesus. He gives us everything we need to press on. But, He can’t if we won’t let Him.
A few weeks ago I had an Ah Ha moment in thinking about the disciple Peter walking on the water. In order for good ol’ Pete to do his water walking he had to keep his eyes on Jesus. If he thought about how deep the sea was, what a good swimmer he was, how fierce the wind was, he was sunk, literally. But, with his eyes fixed on Jesus….he was an extraordinary water walker. He could do something no one else could do.
There is really only one thing you or I can do to help us run or wait with endurance.
We must keep our eyes on Jesus.
When we keep our eyes on Jesus… we should be actively feasting on His word, listening to Him, talking with Him, letting Him fill us, energize us, sustain us, encourage us. We must willfully put one foot in front of the other believing that we live and breathe and move totally at His will and He provides everything we need to endure.
What was the verse my friend shared with me that got me thinking?
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.
Have you ever noticed that when runners run together the run is easier?
As we fix our eyes on Jesus, we must, absolutely must, intercede/pray for each other. We must give each other words of encouragement. We must run or wait together…not alone.
Let’s join hands to endure through this race together.
Thank you for your prayers. Now let me know how to pray for you.
I love JoyDay! There isn’t anything better than each of us sharing the good things God has done in our lives this week. Both in the happy and in the challenges.
Will you join with me in counting ‘seven’ from the past week?
Thank you God for…
- helping me run this race in your strength and not mine.
- this mild winter.
- giving us hope in the midst of waiting.
- a very special dinner with a good friend this week.
- sunshine! Finally!
- your faithfulness… our anchor regardless of circumstances.
- your healing touch.
Now it’s your turn!
Please join me by tapping in your ‘seven’ in the ‘share your extraordinary thoughts’ section below. I dare you!
Thank you for stopping by and taking time to leave your sweet thoughts.
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