By Toni Ford
In Jonathan Cahn’s book, The Book of Mysteries, he shares a story about the “runner’s riddle.” The riddle goes like this:
“Two men in a race. The first is a perfect runner, fast, strong, skilled and confident, one who only runs perfect races. The second is slow, clumsy, weak and unsteady. He’s never been in a race where he did not stumble and fall multiple times before the race was over. The two runners compete in a marathon of widely varying – and at times, dangerous – terrain. The second runner finds himself far behind and falling continuously for the entire length of the race. The first runner preforms with great speed and skill. In the most treacherous of terrain, he falls only once. Apart from that, he runs perfectly.”
Who do you think wins the race? Most would think the skilled runner. However, it is the second winner who actually wins. Some may ask how. The first runner runs only perfect races. Once he falls, it’s no longer a perfect race. His race is over. He’s finished. But the second runner is not running a perfect race. So when he falls, the race is not over. If he keeps falling for the length of the race, it means he also keeps getting up for the length of the race until he crosses the finish line. So the winner is not the best runner, but the one who crosses the finish line.”
This riddle made me think of two scriptures – one reminds me of the year we have just walked through and the other gives us good advice for the year ahead.
1 Corinthians 9:24 – “Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win!” We are all in a race, the same race, the race of life. I know all of us wish that we could run a perfect race, but as we can see from this past year, it has been a year far from perfection. I am sure many of us have fallen in this race of life at some point this year, for we have all been faced with many trials and challenges. However, if you are reading this, then you should give yourself a pat on the back, for you have crossed the finish line of year 2020, and you are a winner! You have continued to get up and you ran the race to win. As a result, you never gave up! You made it, friends – well done!
Hebrews 12:1-2. “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.” As we now prepare for the coming year, the Lord is gracious to give us some important instructions in these verses. First, we need to purify ourselves, seeking His forgiveness of any sins that are in our lives and checking our hearts and minds to make sure we are in alignment with our Lord and His Word. Second, He tells us that we will continue to have challenges in the coming year but remember that this is not a spring but rather a race, and one that must be run with endurance. Third, we get that endurance by keeping our eyes on Jesus through His Word, worship and prayer. As a result, He strengthens our faith, which allows us to stay in the race until the end. Remember that those who have gone before you are cheering you on in the heavens, so don’t give up, and keep your eyes on Jesus!
Lord, thank you for seeing us through this year of 2020. We ask for your continued strength, grace and mercy as we look towards the coming year of 2021. We know that you are going before us to protect, lead and guide us in this coming year. We love you, Lord!
If you would like me to join you in prayer please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to pray for you!