God has set before you a race. It is your own personal race. Keep your eyes on the prize and do not give up. If you do give up, it’s no one’s fault but yours.
It is the object of our faith that is most important.
The “great cloud of witnesses” in verse 1 are all the faithful who have gone before us.
1. The Bible is filled with broken people that encourage us to keep running the race. The Bible is filled with heroes of the faith who were nonetheless messed up people (Abraham, Samson, Rahab). Yes, God can forgive you of your past. God changed all of these people. God used them for His glory. The Bible is filled with broken people who tell us to keep going.
Our lives are a continual process. Not everything that holds us back is sin. Sometimes it’s merely distractions that hold us back.
2. The one sin that holds all of us back is unbelief. God delivered the Israelites from slavery. They walked across the sea on dry ground. Do you think God can’t handle your situation?
You either believe God, or He’s a liar. I’ll take my chances with God.
You have to learn to have patience. God will put us in tribulation to teach us patience. Running your own race requires patience. We have to run our own race with what God gave us. We are not called on to run someone else’s race.
Jesus came for the sick and the lame and the broken-hearted. That was His race.
3. As long as you keep your eyes on Jesus, nothing else really matters. The Cross was part of His race. He became our sin and took our punishment and then came into His divine righteousness.
Pastor: You have stop putting me on a pedestal in this church. Don’t idolize the guy with the microphone. He will let you down. Consider that he might hurt just as much as the rest of the church.
Christ lived as an example but died as a redeemer. The religious leaders hated Christ, but the broken loved Him.
4. Righteousness and ridicule are inseparable. If you do something for the Lord, people will talk about you. You can’t lose sleep over it.
If you can’t “play hurt,” then get off the field.
Don’t get too close to your heroes, or you’ll find out they’re not who you thought they were.