Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. —Hebrews 12:1-2

Carry a 20 pound weight while you are running or swimming and see how that extra weight hinders your progress compared to not having it. Walk through an area that is full of vines and your feet will become entangled. Much more progress can be made without the extra weight or the impeding vines.

What is it that is weighing you down or entangling you so that you are not running the race God has mapped out for you? Do you know what the race is that God has laid out for you? What does it include? Are you being obedient to what you know He desires? Are you getting to know the Lord more and more? Are you utilizing the gifts and abilities He has given You for His honor and glory? Are you keeping your eyes fixed on Him? Are you persevering in His race that He has set out for you?

In the “race” laid out for Jesus He had to endure being rejected by His own creation, be beaten by His own creation and be crucified by His own creation. He endured all this for the joy beyond His “race.” He sat down at the right hand of God at its conclusion. At the conclusion of our race we will be in heaven with Him and all who love Him. ”However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me–the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace” (Acts 20:24). Whatever the Apostle Paul was doing in life he wanted to share the gospel.

Another race marker is approaching fast. The year 2015 is almost upon us and we will be leaving 2014 soon. Let us look back at what the Lord has done in and through our lives to this point and consider what He desires to do in and through it during 2015.

Dear Father, may I be wise in living for You, doing You will in the authority of Your Son, Jesus, and by the power of the Holy Spirit. May I finished the 2014 portion of the race well and do so in the year 2015 and for however longer the race is for me. May it be so!

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