Finishing Well

Finishing Well

Running a 5-K was not something I thought I would ever do. I was that
kid at school who cut the corners in PE when running laps. I didn’t like
running. Well, let me rephrase that; I loathed running. So how did I go
from a kid who hated running to an adult who really enjoys it?

Running was a process for me. It really started out as a quest to lose a
little weight and get some exercise. I didn’t start out of the gate running
that’s for sure; I had to work up to it. I started off walking a mile a day,
slowly at first, then briskly. Then one mile turned into two and two turned
into three miles a day.

Then one day I had this thought, “If I can walk this many miles with no
problem, maybe I can run a mile.” So I started running. At first I ran a
half-mile, then a mile, and next thing you know, several months later, I
was running 2 and 3 miles.

I have actually come to the place where I really like running. I look
forward to it each evening as the sun is setting. It’s my time. It’s my time
to be alone. As I run and breath in the fresh air, it seems to clear my
head; I think much better out there under the stars. This is the place
where God speaks to me the most. I hear His voice so much clearer.
Many a message was conceived while running in the open night air.

Recently, I’ve been training for my next 5-K run. I’m eating right,
running everyday, and pushing myself for a better time. I want to finish
the race and I want to finish well. I even aspire to win…hopefully one day I will.

Do you realize we are all in a race of sorts- that race to obtain an
imperishable crown, the crown of life?

 24  Do you not know that those who run
in a race all run, but one receives the prize?
Run in such a way that you may obtain it.
25  And everyone who competes for the prize
is temperate in all things. Now they do it to
obtain a perishable crown, but we for an
imperishable crown.”
– 1 Corinthians 9:24 25(NKJV)

True, not everyone who runs a race wins, but everyone who believes
and finishes well can win the spiritual race. We must believe in Jesus
Christ as our Lord and Savior and live our lives in such a way that is
pleasing to God that we might obtain that crown of life.

1 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,
2  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 (NKJV)

To finish the race and finish it well, we need to lay aside everything that
would hinder us and weigh us down. Sin is very heavy! It says in Romans
6:23 that the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal
life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Sin will only bring death, not only in
body, but spiritually as well.

Let us all run with endurance this race set before us, looking unto Jesus
the author and finisher of our faith. Those who are faithful to the end
are the ones who win (Mark 13:13). You cannot stop short of finishing the
race. You must keep your eye on the prize!

7  I have fought the good fight, I have finished
the race, I have kept the faith.  8  Finally, there
is laid up for me the crown of righteousness,
which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give
to me on that Day, and not to me only but also
to all who have loved His appearing.
– 2 Timothy 4:7-8(NKJV)

Pastor Joanna

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