2016 has been a tough year in our world. With only 4 ½ months to go until 2017, I have to admit, I will be glad to greet a new year. I think it is true what “they” say…the older you get, the faster the years go, yet, with the years, pain becomes brighter and more felt. The high pain tolerance of youth fades as age accumulates experiences, friends and family, and love for this world. The “race that is set before us,” from Hebrews 12:1b truly requires perseverance for truth and constant reminders of our hope in Jesus.

The past week and a half have brought a breath of fresh air to many in our world with the Summer Olympics in Rio. We have watched with anticipation, excitement, and sometimes boredom (Golf), for moments that prove that humanity is not a lost cause (runners Abbey D’Agostino and Nikki Hamblin picking each other up from the racetrack forfeiting any chance for a medal)…moments that bring joy (Zac Efron surprising 4-time Rio Gold Medalist Gymnast Simone Biles and making ALL of her Olympic dreams come true), and moments that give hope (my favorite Rio Olympics story, Michael Phelps being crushed by his biggest fan, Singaporean swimmer Joseph Schooling, in the 100 meter butterfly).

All of these Olympians know something about finishing a race. Many of them have natural talents, but even with God-given talent, they each have to train for their event as they lean towards their goals. While training and accomplishing their goals gives credit to whom God created them to be, they don’t simply become an Olympian for their own good. Olympians represent their families, their countries, and the Olympic Refugee Team probably knows this better than the others…they represent what is good about humankind. We are the witnesses to their games and competitions. Without our attention, the Summer Olympic Games in Rio would be nothing except exercise, movement, and trophies. Yet, because we are participating as witnesses, the Olympics matter.

Hebrews 11 and 12 explores the incredible truth of being a witness. “Yet all these, though they were commended for their faith, did not receive what was promised, since God had provided something better so that they would not, apart from us, be made perfect. Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God.” 11:39-12:2 Last week, a good man, Don Compton, passed on from this earth and is now in that “cloud of witnesses.” There is something better beyond this earth, and while we are participating actively in the restoration and resurrection of our world, we are given hope for we know this race matters to us, to God, and to our cloud of witnesses.

Other Posts You Might Like:

What a Change, But What a Great Reward! - Edy Tercero

Mind Over Matter - Madi Burnett

Out of My Comfort Zone - Judy Wilmoth

I Know Who I Am - Nic Dunbar

Benevolence Ministry - Don Compton



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McKinney at Cardinal

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