Running the Race

“Let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith.” Hebrews 12:1b-2


Have you ever been laser focused on a task only to have someone or something interrupt you? It may be unintentional, but once your concentration is broken it is often difficult to resume your level of intensity.


The world distracts us. Satan loves to throw us off our game. If the devil can keep or hinder us from service to the Lord, he will. And that’s often when the most annoying distractions rear their ugly heads. Sometimes our distractions are more than a brief interruption. Sometimes the distractions Paul calls encumbrances become heavy burdens. The word “encumbrance” suggests something of mass. Something weighty that can weigh us down. Especially the emotional and spiritual distractions we face in life. Doubt and disbelief, for instance, distract us the easiest and the quickest.


We need to deal effectively with whatever gets in our way. The only way to deal effectively with our distractions is to change our focus and make sure we have the right direction.


Unlike a 5K marathon or a downhill ski race, the course for the race we’re running is not always marked with colorful, strategic markers.

In fact, sometimes we don’t know what course we will follow. But God would rather we didn’t say, “I know where I’m going” and say instead, “God I don’t know where I’m going. Show me the way.”


We need the right focus as we run the race set before us. If we have the right focus, we can run the race with perseverance and endurance. We need to “fix” our eyes on Jesus. When our gaze is “fixed” on Him we realize something. We have the right direction for our lives, and we have the confidence that we can effectively run the race set before us and accomplish the things God has for us.


Father, distractions haunt us every day. Interruptions happen. Satan always tries to draw us away from You any way he can. Help us, O God, to keep our eyes fixed on you today. Help us realize, O God, that You are here with us in this moment. We have a race set before us that You have equipped us to run. Help us to persevere in You, O Lord. Help us to endure the distractions we face and depend totally on You now to write our story, then finish it in victory. In Jesus name we pray. Amen