Sharing His Holiness
Spirit of God, often You choose to come to me in quiet and unobtrusive ways. I wait in anticipation.
Read Hebrews 12:1-13
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
The Christian life is portrayed here as a race. However, it is a long-distance race, not a sprint! Are you keeping those legs moving?
Life often feels like a race–for many it is a rat race in a Darwinian jungle where only the fittest survive. The race that the Bible depicts, however, is different. It is run in the presence of God and a cloud of witnesses (faithful believers from the past, as described in ch. 11). When stretched to the limit, we can almost hear the silent roar of support from the witnesses. But our eyes must not be on them; our eyes must be focused on Jesus (2). Why so?
Jesus is the model for the race. He is our Savior, example and motivator. As we run the spiritual race, the contest can be fierce because it is with sin that we struggle. We are asked to resist sin “to the point of shedding your blood” (4). The Christian life is not a holiday; it is sometimes a painful battle and struggle. The believer might be tempted to give up, but when he sees Jesus who was obedient even unto death on the cross (Phil. 2:8), he takes courage and learns to persevere. He will see the pain and struggle as part of the discipline imposed by the heavenly Father (Prov. 3:11,12; Jer. 31:18).
The Father’s discipline is “for our good that we may share in his holiness” (10). There is method and meaning in God’s discipline. It may not feel nice at the moment, but it is working for our own perfection. In the end, we will benefit and reap “a harvest of righteousness and peace” (11). Running requires training, and God is like a coach who pushes us to run beyond our own strength, filling us with his Spirit’s strength, and placing before our eyes his own Son who demonstrates the discipline of godliness and runs before us. What a race!–with the triune God involved in it.
Keep your eyes on Jesus and run the race well without giving up. Is the Lord disciplining you at this time? What good do you see coming from it?
Spirit of God, through all the ups and downs of my life, continue to form holiness in me. I want to be like Jesus and to commend him well to others.
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