Spiritual Run for Us All

It’s an odd day when I’m not aware how life is full of challenges. Sometimes it is very hard to persevere in the ordinary hurdles of everyday life. Sometimes our personal or community circumstances are really hard. Sometimes, the world is very difficult to understand. Yet, I’m aware, and think you are, too, that this is not what really matters. This is the moment I need to remind myself of and reconnect to God’s world view. What is God calling me and you to pay attention to? What actions could we take to express our God-values and get us out of ourselves?

In Sunday’s focus scripture from Hebrews 11:29 – 12:2, the writer uses “we” and “us.” This signals that our life-race is not a solo run. Instead, the community of the faithful journeys together – not in competition, but in a spirit of collaboration and encouragement. And… that God never gives up on us or leaves us abandoned on the track.

The Message Bible instructs us to “strip down, start running – and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus…” These are encouraging words for the early Christian community that is struggling to persevere in the midst of violent oppression. Sometimes I think we, too, are struggling against the odds – being a relevant church in the 21st century. Those early Christians, however, have become our spiritual mentors – who seek justice, act kindly, endure hardship, even death, because their faith in God looks toward a world made new.

What does this ‘spiritual race’ look like for us as church? For you personally? How do we trust in God to bring us through challenging times?

O God, I do try to act in faith – to do what is just and right and good and true. When I am engulfed by fears and anxious because I seem to stand alone, remind me of your witnesses. Urge me on. Help me to persevere against the odds. Amen.
Shalom, Pr. Barb

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