“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 11:1-2

The race.  It invokes feelings of anticipation.  Of preparation.  Sweat.  Pushing.  Perseverance.  Ahh yes, enduring til the end.  The race is what we’re here for in this life.  It’s what the ‘great cloud of witnesses’ shows up to watch unfold.  Remember the verse our son was practicing with Nicole the morning I had the dream of walking on water (see Wholehearted Seeking – Week 2)?  It was Hebrews 11:8 – “And by faith Abraham…”. It humbles me to know that those who have walked this road before us are gathered to watch the unfolding drama of our own race.  Will we be obedient?  Will we risk not being 100% sure, but stepping out anyway?  Will we lay down our own way for our King’s?

A woman recently told us her story about being surrounded by this 'cloud of witnesses.'  She was running on the beach one morning, and as she was talking to the Lord about the weight of all the pressures of life and ministry, she saw a man running past her.  Except it wasn't just any man.  You see, she and her husband were praying for a man who was dying the night before.  And as this runner passed her on the beach, she recognized him and knew it was the spirit of this man who had run the race, advancing Christ’s kingdom, who now was within moments of reaching the finished line.  His joy and lightness as he sped past her spoke to her heart: “Run this race.  Endure.  The finish line is glorious!” 

My heart leaps within me – YESSSS!  Nicole and I know the race he’s given us to run is one of reconciling, strengthening, and establishing relationships.  We know Camp Refuge will be a blessing in this community, and we will see miraculous transformations of relationships!  And though we are only in the beginning stages, we are excited about the finish line! 

Special focus:  
Please pray that we would be able to cast aside every weight and look to Jesus as we run this race!  May we be obedient to His every prompting and may we have the faith of the ‘great cloud of witnesses’ that went before us.

*A message from Bonnie Chavda at the Glory Conference greatly inspired this post J


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