Run

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“Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.”

 

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, 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.  Hebrews 12:1-2 NLT

The eleventh chapter of Hebrews is often called the “Hall of Faith”. It tells the stories of those who served God with great passion and unflinching faithfulness through the toughest of times. They suffered, risked, obeyed and trusted God to do what only He can do.

This verse says that their lives, their testimonies of how to trust God are like having a great grandstand of faith leaders cheering you on as you follow Jesus. What are they telling you? They are telling you to throw off everything that hinders and run the race God has called you to run.

Not your mom’s race or your neighbor’s faith race but your faith race. 

They are telling you to keep focused on the finish line and lay down whatever is weighing you down from getting there: other people’s opinions, irrational fears,  fear-laden doubts, time-wasting worries. 

They know that a life of faith isn’t easy.

And that the only way you can do it is by keeping your eyes on Jesus.

Keep your eyes on Jesus, my friend, take a deep breath and run your race. 

 

 

Called, Loved, Cared For

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“I am writing to all who have been called by God the Father, who loves you and keeps you safe in the care of Jesus Christ.”
‭‭Jude‬ ‭1:1‬ ‭NLT‬‬
You are called.
You are loved.
You are cared for.
You don’t have to strive to take care of “number one” or stress to win the approval of others.
Jesus will walk with you, guide you and bring you back when you wander off.
Accept God’s invitation to live as a cherished child today.
Live loved right now.
Let Jesus take care of you.
May your relationship with Jesus be like the eye of a storm where the uncertainty of this season will swirl around you as the peace of God which passes all understanding guards your heart.
How are you living in the invitation of God?
How are you receiving His love?
Are you living like you are cared for or like you have to take care of yourself? 

The Irresistible Invitation

Sometimes where you are must get so uncomfortable, so unbearable, so not okay, that changing becomes preferable and therefore possible. 

We tend to stay where we are in our relationship to God, our relationship to eachother and even our relationship to ourselves until we are challenged to change by circumstance or when we receive the irrisistable invitation from someone who is “out there” somewhere we want to be. 

In Matthew 14, Peter was tired of where he was. He had been battling the winds and waves all night. His very own comfort zone, the boat, had been violently tossed about and though he exerted all his effort, he just wasn’t getting very far. 

At first, Peter was terrified when he saw the man calmly walking on the water out in storm. But when he heard him shout “Don’t be afraid”, Peter recognized the voice, trusted and responded in a moment of faith. Of hope. Of belief. 

““Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” “Come,” he said. 
Matthew‬ ‭14:28 NIV‬‬

Peter heard the invitation but he still had to get out of the boat. He still had to take that first impossible step of faith. He probably died a few deaths inbetween the moment he heard Jesus say “Come” and he stepped out of the boat. But he did it. 

“Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭14:29‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Peter decided that he would rather be with Jesus, out in the impossible, than stay where he was. He was tired of straining and wanted to start walking with his Savior once more, no matter where that might be.

Have you been straining and feel exhausted?

Is where you are at spiritually, emotionally or mentally become unbearable? 

Jesus invites you to “Come”. To step out of the boat (what you’ve known but what isn’t working) and come walk with Him in the impossible. 

If you have heard His invitation and hesitated, I want to encourage you to go for it!

Follow through. 
Take the step. 

Keep your eyes on Jesus, my friend, and decide that where you are isn’t where your going to stay.