Words from the Heart for Friday August 5th, 2016

So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing.

1 Corinthians 9:26 (NLT)

Running With Purpose

When preparing for a race, runners plan every stage of the race so they can run effectively. In the Christian walk, are you preparing every step of the way? Are you planning times of communion with the Lord? Times of service to the saints? People with whom you would like to share your faith?

Listen to Words from the Heart

Devotion

When Jean-Paul Bedard ran in the Boston Marathon in 2014 he did so with purpose. Just as he was closing in on the finish line the year before, he looked back to smile at his wife, Mary-Anne. About 20 minutes later, two explosions rocked the marathon and the city, killing three people and injuring many others. Although she was not injured, he is still in shock about how close his wife was to the explosion. Just prior to the 2013 Boston Marathon, Bedard had told his family that he had been sexually abused as a child and the stress of surviving the bombing created a new crisis. Bedard spiraled downward into depression that took months to overcome. Running helped lift him out of the depression and confronting the 2014 Boston Marathon, according to Bedard “was the only way to heal.”

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I have a few friends who are long distance runners. One friend runs every day with a purpose – he has to get his time down so he can compete in the Boston Marathon. Everything he does – his diet, his exercising, his running – is purposeful. He will run in the Boston Marathon one day. The Bible tells us that we are to run the Christian race with the same determination. Paul writes this in 1 Corinthians 9:26: “So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing.” Another version says “I do not run like someone running aimlessly.” There are lots of people who run just to run – they have no goal in mind, they just like to run. But there are the few who run with purpose. The same is true in the Christian world. There are Christians who have little discipline in their walk with Christ – Paul calls them carnal. But there are those like the apostle who are determined to press toward the mark for which Christ has called him heavenward. They run the race with purpose and discipline – they keep focused on the goal of becoming like Christ and set aside anything that would prevent them from doing so. How determined are you in your walk with Christ? Are you running aimlessly, or do you wake up each morning committed to the spiritual disciplines that will help you to live victoriously? Run with purpose today.

These have been words from the heart.
Bob Beasley