Its funny how easily the desire to be like others, have what others have or possibly dominate others seem to be the driving force for many. Well I will have to admit that I have found myself doing these many times throughout my life’s journeys.
I have always had this athletic build which meant I could do justice to 100 / 200meters races and come out on top. But during the races I was always overwhelmed with the fear that someone would overtake me which caused me to constantly look over my shoulder to make sure I knew where the next person was. Interestingly enough this would always cost me the race. But I never seemed to learn.
Its funny when I graduated to the 200meters sprint, and whenever I was placed in the first two lanes, this would always upset me a great deal. Because it meant that the people on lanes 6 and 7 would win the race automatically in my mind. So before the race had started I would have already given up already, and pretend to have pulled something towards the midpoint.
Its funnier even when I finally landed that lane 7, which I thought was all I needed to win the race, after putting all my effort in the first 100meters, I would realise for the next 100meters that I was no different to the people on the other lanes. Excited as I was when I started, people cheering me on as I led the pack, my parents very sure that I was the leader of the pack from where they were seated, and shocked to hear that I did not win the race. Interesting enough I never fully understood why? And even more baffling that the races I was the favourite for I never seemed to win. But It all makes sense now. My attitude and planning was different. I believed in my own strength, and would always predict the outcome of the race depending on my starting point. If the starting point wasn’t in my favour, giving up was the next option. And also during the race I always made a point to constantly look over my shoulder to check the positions of others in the race. So as you could see I was never a serious contender. Going where the wind blew my decisions could be likened to.
so TODAY I am thankful that the Lord has used this example to REVEAL Himself to me. To help me understand why the track that I am on is unimportant in the race called life. We don’t all have the same starting position and many always seemed to advance more than others, which always causes one to feel envious, evaluate themselves, wonder why their case is different, feel cheated and maybe cry out to God. But the one thing God keeps bringing to my memory is the people on lane 6 and 7 (who represent the leaders of the pack from your point of view), and the ones on lanes 1 and 2 (lagging behind – a position I always found myself in). It may appear that they are winning the race, but its all about where you are looking at it from.
Have you not noticed this? When the people in lanes 6 and 7 comes out of the bend (the first 100meters) they level up with the others in the previous 5 lanes. A reminder that we will all get to that point, the end of the first 100meters, which is where the race really begins – the beginning of the next 100meters.
This is why Paul warns us in the books of the bible – In 1 Corinth. 9:24 (Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize); asking us why we gave up on the race even when we were doing well, Gal. 5:7 (You were running a good race. Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth?); And the reminder of pushing ahead to finish the race the Lord has called each and everyone one of us for regardless of the track He placed us on, Acts 20: 24 (However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace).
I have found myself many a times giving up in situations where I should have kept running. That is why the Lord reminds us that the race is not to the swift – or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to them all – Ecc. 9:11. Then it finally hit me, I have tried looking over my shoulders which always cost me the race on the track. But I will be foolish to repeat the same mistake in the race called life. I refuse to look over my shoulder to evaluate my position by comparing my life to the life of others, but to ask God to help me “pace” my self with His strength. So that I can finish the race well.
so TODAY I am thankful to God for His Revelations, through which I am able to appreciate His Love and Peace of mind during the life’s journeys. His Joy whenever I remember the great plans He has for me and the family, friends and people He has surrounded me with. Today Dear Lord I am Thankful for the Journey called Life, which many have in one way or the other dropped out from, but you’ve still encouraged me to run on.
So today dear friends, what will you do with your own race? Are you going to give up on your race because of the track that you are on? Or are you willingly to be patient for the Lord to take you through this first phase and into the finishing straights. Would your answer be like that of Paul’s who said in 2 Tim. 4:7 – I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.Or would it be something opposite. I pray that the former will be your answer.