“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”
Hebrews 12:1 (NIV)
Paul uses the analogy of running a race to describe the Christian life. He paints a picture of a poor runner who has come to the starting blocks with a large heavy weight tied to him and chains wrapped around his legs. There is no way this runner is going to finish the race, let alone win. Instead Paul suggests that the runner first throw off everything that hinders them. That could be events, habits, environments, attitudes, anything that “triggers” in us the desire to do things that Christ would not want us do, or prevent us from doing what we should. We need to throw off anything that leads us toward Spiritual apathy or complacency. In their book “True Faced” the authors point out that in reality there are two kinds of sins. These are sins that we commit resulting in guilt and sins that are committed against us resulting in hurt. Both of these “sins” can trip us up. If we allow guilt to grow, it will spread like a cancer in our Spirit. If we allow hurt to go unchecked, it can fester into sadness, anger, fear, malice, bitterness and many other negative attitudes. We need to deal with the sin in our life — both those that we commit and those committed against us. Then we can run the race. Today let us consider our own life. Are we running the race that God has called us to? If not, what is weighing us down? What is entangling us? Pray today that God would help you throw it off.
Father, You know that I need to run in this race of life. I confess that I have let burdens weigh me down. I have let sins, both that I have committed and those committed against me, trip me up. Help me, Lord, throw off these things. Help me run today, free from all these things that hinder me. In Jesus’ name.
TODAY’S AFFIRMATION & MEDITATION
I throw off those things that trip me up
Meditate on those “sins” that have caused you to stumble over and over again. A sin that you keep committing or one that was committed against you and you cannot let it go. Be an observer and visualize yourself begin to stumble. Experience the emotional pain that it brings you. But then, invite Jesus into the scene. Ask Him to help you. Ask Him to speak “truth” to you about the situation. Listen to Him and ask Him to help you “throw off” the sin, like you would a chain that has you bound. See yourself becoming free. Sense God’s power working in you. Feel the freedom and affirm out loud, “I throw off those things that trip me up.”
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