Hebrews 12, vv.1-3 records this: “Since we are surrounded by so many examples of faith, we must get rid of everything that slows us down, especially sin that distracts us. We must run the race that lies ahead of us and never give up. We must focus on Jesus, the source and goal of our faith. He saw the joy ahead of him, so he endured death on the cross and ignored the disgrace it brought him. Then he received the highest position in heaven, the one next to the throne of God. Think about Jesus, who endured opposition from sinners, so that you don’t become tired and give up.”
I imagine that if you went out on the street today and asked this question: Would you like to refrain from enduring any challenges in your life? – that the answer “yes” would be overwhelming. As a matter of fact, it may be close to unanimous. When presented with the choice to live “event free” or “eventful,” most would select Easy Street. If we are honest, even as Christian believers, we can probably look back to a time when we would desire that path. No winepress. No sifting. No testing. No problems.
As I just gander at 2012 and the 5 months that have nearly passed in this year, so far, much has been transformed, changed, flipped, and rocked in my life and in the life of my family. As I write this out on Saturday, May 19, there are 3 critical “winepress” life challenges that face us, none more important of course than having a 6 year old son still in a battle against Lymphoma. Questions. Uncertainties. Unchartered waters. Yet, a part of life. A part of faith cultivation. An opportunity to draw closer to God (and not further away).
It is an opportunity for me, for us, to “focus on Jesus, the source and goal of our faith.” My prayer is that in all of this, in life itself, that I will know God more and more with each passing day. That the sun wouldn’t go down today without me knowing God in a new way and to a greater depth. Today, I merely seek to be more like Him; reflecting His grace, and mercy, and love in this life that I live. Let us run this race and never give up. Let us not be discouraged and defeated, but alive and victorious, in Him.
Lord, may You be magnified, glorified, and satisfied by the way I live my life. May it speak to Your goodness and truth, which are eternal!
In His power, that is all sufficient,