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Friday, November 20, 2015

Focus on your race...

...not on the other runners or their lanes. 

I need to be really careful that this piece doesn't come out all wrong. Let me ground this piece with these verses - so you know where I'm coming from:

Hebrews 12:2 We have all these great people around us as examples. Their lives tell us what faith means. So we, too, should run the race that is before us and never quit. We should remove from our lives anything that would slow us down and the sin that so often makes us fall. (AMP)
1 Corinthians 9:24 - Do you not know that in a race all the runners run [their very best to win], but only one receives the prize? Run [your race] in such a way that you may seize the prize and make it yours! (AMP)
There are many times that other people's lives look so attractive - to me...then when I get to know a bit more, I find contentment, despite the challenges in mine as it is. The other thing to note is sometimes, knowingly or unknowingly, I find myself wondering about other people's lives - and I know it's good to care but not to the point that I want to try and live their lives for them or even for myself. The best thing we can do for ourselves is to know and run our own race even if the lane lines are blurry.

We have a Biblical example in Paul. He tried preaching to the Jews, maybe because he felt that the only way to counter his previous persecutions was to now preach to them. Of course he failed woefully - not to mention the resistance he faced.
Acts 18: 4-6 - 4And he reasoned and debated in the synagogue every Sabbath, trying to persuade Jews and Greeks; but when Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia (northern Greece), Paul began devoting himself completely to [preaching] the word, and solemnly testifying to the Jews that Jesus is the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed). But since the Jews kept resisting and opposing him, and blaspheming [God], he shook out his robe and said to them, “Your blood (damnation) be on your own heads! I am innocent of it. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.” (AMP, emphasis mine)
Image result for run in your lane bible verseHe made it sound like he was doing them a favour, forgetting that God had told him which lane* he should be in from the get-go. See Act 9:15 - But the Lord said to him, “Go, for this man is a [deliberately] chosen instrument of Mine, to bear My name before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel; (AMP)

And it was in that "lane" that he ended up writing more than half of the New Testament. Imagine what a big chunk of the Word we may have missed if Paul insisted on running in a different lane. Let's learn from that: focus on our race, not on other runners, & stay in our lane...that's where you'll excel as there's no traffic there.

*Galatians 2: 7-8 - But these leaders saw that God had given me a special work, the same as Peter. God gave Peter the work of telling the Good News to the Jews. But God gave me the work of telling the Good News to the non-Jewish people. God gave Peter the power to work as an apostle for the Jewish people. God gave me the power to work as an apostle too, but for those who are not Jews. (ERV)

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