"we plan for things ahead, we prepare for things now and for the things behind us... we let go."
Not too long ago my family and I were entered into a marathon. We didn't plan on participating in this particular marathon and until then we hadn't fully prepared ourselves to run this particular race, yet there we were smack dab in the midst of thousands of other runners on race day. Can you imagine? Finding yourself caught in the middle of a crowded marathon with so many other finish line hopefuls, about to embark on a long run that you hadn't prepared for... the leg cramps alone are daunting enough, not to mention the out of breath condition that you would most likely experience throughout the length of the race! But there we were, armed only with what we have firmly planted on the inside of us.
You see, that is the what this commitment that we have to Father God is ALL about.
As humans we have this extreme tendency to 'know why'... we study, we buy cd's, subscribe to apps, enroll in bible school, faithfully attend church and secure our spot and our opinions in all of the great philosophical discussions that we can find... all for the purpose of understanding. But just WHAT are we REALLY understanding?
Understanding by definition has everything to do with our own intelligence. The speed with which we understand, can tell us what level our intelligence is at... even our lack of understanding speaks of our intelligence abilities. Us humans often equate understanding with victory... intellect with success... and knowing 'why' with superiority. Yet we tend to forget that one little scripture that contains a powerful punch (Isaiah 55:8) "My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts," says the LORD. "And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine." Because when we get down to it, on race day what we know can only take us so far, if we truly want to make it to that finish line, we need something bigger. But what we need is not something that we can see, it isn't even something that we can control 100%... what we need is found deep within us... some call it 'drive', some call it 'will', some even call it 'crazy'; whatever you want to call it, we've all got it.
In this life we all find ourselves inside of moments. Sometimes these moments last longer than most, sometimes these moments take us by surprise, sometimes these moments are filled with happiness and sometimes these moments are the hardest moments that we will ever face. Regardless, we all must know that what we expose ourselves to (from bible school to unhealthy addictions and everything in between) on a continual basis, is the very thing that will carry us through the grueling marathons and help us reach the finish line with breath and stamina to spare. And as my family and myself continue running, we will continue to tap into the goodness, the wealth and the power of God's word that remains to be our crazy driving force, because the things that are embedded deep within each of us will truly and undoubtedly sustain us through ANYTHING.
So today's message is simple... KEEP IT UP! Keep your commitment to reading the word, keep waking up early on your coveted Sunday morning day off and go to church, keep speaking to God all day long and including Him in all that you do, keep listening to sermons and audio books and podcasts, keep signing up for conferences that exist to make a difference, keep blasting songs that remind you of just how GOOD God is, keeping giving to Kingdom causes and to those in need, keep helping each other and keeping each other accountable, keep praying with friends and family for each other and for those you do not know, keep exposing yourself to all things that point to heaven and keep LOVE at the forefront of ALL that you do... because there is NOTHING too small or seemingly insignificant when it comes to God. He is very much a part of every action that you take on His behalf. Every single thing that you do in His Name, not only provides you with great understanding... but MOST important... it provides you with a unique impartation that only God can give, for all of life's races. Be encouraged today as you read this and trust in Him with all that you've got. Love, PL