Running a race – Part One

 
Read 1 Corinthians 9:24-27
 
The most important thing about running a race is to finish.  In 2 Tim 4:7, Paul says “
I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith” Having a world record pace ½ way through the race is no good if you don’t finish. Having the best looking stride most of the way is no good if you don’t complete the race. Our life begins at birth, but our Christian race begins at the new birth, when we get saved. Paul’s race began later in life, but he ran his race well and finished the race. In verse 6, he says, For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. Paul knew his time was almost up, but he was ready, for he had finished the race. Here are a couple of thoughts about running a race, and finishing a race.
 
First, in order to finish, you must set the correct pace. If you run too fast – you burn out – and you won’t finish. But if you run too slow – you wear out – you also won’t finish. Unfortunately, all of us who have been Christians for a length of time have see people who are on fire for God, get involved in everything, seem to go 24 hours a day for the Lord, but then stop and fall away. They left no room for anything else, no rest, no family, sometimes not even any alone time with the Lord. We have also seen those who do very little for the Lord, don’t seem to want to get involved, don’t have any fire and then they just fade away.
 
Second, we must realize that everyone has a different pace. God gives everyone talents and abilities suited to them. What one can do another may not be able to do. Not everyone can be a teacher, not everyone can be the pastor, not everyone can sing. But everyone can pray, everyone can be a witness, everyone can do something for the Lord. God gives everyone talents so that the body of Christ will be strong and complete.
 
Third, Pace can be improved with experience. It should increase. You should be doing more for the Lord now, than you were when you were first saved. If you have been a Christian for some time, you should know your Bible better, pray harder and witness more. That is why God allows things to come into our lives, to strengthen us and to help us increase our pace and our ability to serve Him.
 
End of part one

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Responses to Problems

Luke 22:42 – Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done  

Responses to problems   All of us will encounter things in our lives. We will have joyous events, bad circumstances, difficult conditions, and aggravating people. How we respond to these things show our spiritual condition. There are 3 main ways we can react, just as people did in the Scriptures.  

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Comfort Zone

Ezra 3:11-13, “And they sang together by course in praising and giving thanks unto the LORD; because he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever toward Israel. And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid. But many of the priests and Levites and chief of the fathers, who were ancient men, that had seen the first house, when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, wept with a loud voice; Read more…


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Stay Strong

Read Hebrews 10:19-31   Verse 25, “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” Paul gives us four ways to stay strong in verses 22-25:

  1. Draw near to God. If you aren’t closer to God today than you were yesterday, you are backslidden. Someone said, “If you are farther away from God than you once were, it wasn’t God that moved.” Read more…

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A Little Faith

Read Matthew 17:14-20   Matthew 17:20, “And Jesus said, … If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.”        Faith is something that is often misunderstood because the devil has given us two false impressions of faith. The first is that God requires great faith from us before He will act. The second is that faith is the absence of doubt. Both of these are lies. Read more…


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The Foolish, The Weak and The Base

Read 1 Corinthians 1:26-31 Americans are great Hero worshipers.   We take a man and because he can take a ball and put it through a metal ring, we give him 25 million dollars a year.   Because a man or woman is attractive, we pay them millions to wear clothes that most of us can never afford   Because they spend years in college, we allow them to teach our children things that are contrary to the Word of God   We look for the biggest, the strongest, and the fastest, the person with the biggest muscles, the whitest teeth, and the shiniest hair.   Read more…


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Kept by grace

We Christians are funny creatures sometimes. True Bible believing Christians would fight and die for the doctrine of salvation by grace and grace alone. We would refute salvation by works, or salvation by faith plus works. But then once we have salvation, some of us somehow think that a person who could never be good enough to earn salvation, can now be good enough to keep his salvation. That somehow, this sinful flesh that we all carry, can live sinlessly. But such is not the case.  Read more…


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Waiting on God

Habakkuk 1:1-2 
 
The burden which the prophet Habakkuk saw. Lord, how long shall I cry, and You will not hear? Even cry out to You, “Violence!” And You will not save. 
 
Habakkuk had been praying, apparently for some time. Despite his prayers, he sees violence against the righteous and God apparently does nothing. Habbakkuk sees sin and iniquity everywhere. He sees mischief and trouble. Even God’s law is ignored, the thing that is supposed to keep everything in order and pleasing to God, and sin is rampant.  Read more…

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Chipmunks and Blue Jays

Many times, our family has gone camping at Twin Lakes in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California. We saw all sorts of wild life from deer to bear. But the two most common at our campsite were chipmunks and Blue Jays. As I watched them, I saw some Scriptural principles that we can learn to help us in our lives. Read more…


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The Importance of singing – a communion thought

Music and singing is a very important part of the Christian life. In fact, it’s a very important part of the entire bible. We have the Psalms which were songs. We have the song of Moses, the song of Deborah, the song of Solomon and many, many others. Songs have the power to make you feel the words in a way you can’t get any other way. A song can bring you back to a certain time in your life, or give you strength for the circumstances you may be in. Read more…


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