Finish the race
In 1992, Olympic favourite Derek Redmond showed us what Christian perseverance should look like.
The Christian life is like a race. It requires discipline, training, and perseverance:
“Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.” (1 Corinthians 9:24-27)
However, unlike an athletic race, the important point is not that we come first, but that we finish the race:
“However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me —the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace.” (Acts 20:24)
For most of us, our race will look a lot like Derek Redmond’s run in the 1992 Olympics. There will be trials, and unexpected problems that might make us want to quit. We need to help each other across the line, so we can say like Paul:
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” (2 Timothy 4:7)