Saturday, January 22, 2011

What's a race without hurdles?

"Do you see what this means-all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we'd better get on with it. Strip down, start running-and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we're in. Study how He did it. Because He never lost sight of where He was headed-that exhilarating finish in and with god-He could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now He's there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility He plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls! In this all-out match against sin, others have suffered far worse than you, to say nothing of what Jesus went through-all that bloodshed! So don't feel sorry for yourselves. Or have you forgotten how good parents treat children, and that God regards you as His children?" Hebrews 12:1-5 The Message

Do those words excite you as they do me? WooHoo! We have a God on our side who paved the way for His children. Remember Danial Boone? That guy who ventured out into the wilderness to pave a way for those to follow? Think he was ever afraid? Think he had days of terrible struggle? I cannot imagine what it was like to pave the Wilderness Road for hundreds upon hundreds to follow. He was at the forefront. He knew the path and he knew just how hard it was. He didn't expect anyone to do anything he himself was not willing to do.

My friends we have a Savior who paved the to the cross for us. There is nothing we face that He has not faced. Can we really expect not to have struggle? It is through that very struggle that our faith increases and God creates in us, His children, a desire to follow His path. We don't have to stay in the wilderness for forty years. We can trust in Him and stay within the boundaries He has for us. It's when we get off on our own that we lose our way and we lose site of our path before us.

God gave the Promise Land to the Israelites. It was not an easy road getting there. They struggled. Most of their struggle was their own doing. God opens the door, but He expects us to follow every direction. It is when we listen fully that we can see what is promised ahead. We don't have to fear the road before us as long we know it's the road God has called us to be on.

What about those very veterans who have paved a way for us to have freedom? The road before them was not an easy one. We can look to Martin Luther King Jr. He paved the way for us to have equality. So many have stepped out. They have made a way. They are examples for us. We don't have to have a pity party when things get hard. We need to stand in faith looking to our Savior who have paved our way home. He is giving us the promise land of heaven. All we have to do is follow the path before us. In our following Him others will see the road we are on. They too will want to join us. Then we can walk this road together, paving the way for those who will come after us. Then we too will cheer from heavens door.

When things get difficult all we must do is focus on our Lord. See His path and all that was in front of Him. He could have given up, but He never wavered. Whatever is in our way, God will make a way for us to go over it, under it or around it, but there are those times the only way is to go right through it, but He will be there every step of the way with us. We never have to face anything alone. He is our Guide. He is our Forever North. Don't lose sight of Him. For it is He who will guide us home. Before we get home we must finish our race here. Our road has been paved. Now we must be willing to show others the way.
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