The long, gruelling 100km trailwalk through bush, over mountain tracks and creek crossings is about to begin. The participants are lined up, stripped to the bare essentials for what will take a good competitor 24 hours to complete. All is ready.
Then another competitor approaches the starting line. He is fully dressed, wearing bulky clothes and a padded jacket with bulging pockets and a fur hat. He is carrying a packed bag and an umbrella.
Surely he wouldn’t try this long, arduous walk like that?
“Of course I am! The race is long and treacherous so I am prepared. There is absolutely NOTHING WRONG with what I have here. Every thing I have is good and beneficial to me.”
Yes, the things may be GOOD.
They would be beneficial in some circumstances.
But are they BENEFICIAL to him in this race?
Will they HELP him in the race?
Hebrews 12: 1
“Let us lay aside every weight”
The Christian life requires us not only to AVOID SIN but also to give up some GOOD THINGS which will keep us from BEING OUR BEST, and from GIVING OUR BEST, and from DOING OUR BEST for the glory of God.
“Lay aside every weight”
What weights are we carrying in our Christian race
– the race which “is set” before us – the race from the cross to glory?
(from conversion to physical death)
We easily recognise some weights – sinful habits, bad temper, impatience, a critical spirit, a gossiping tongue, greed, selfishness, resentment, grudges – the list seems endless, but what about the “good and beneficial” things which can be hindrances? How many times do we allow “good and beneficial” things to hinder our walk with Christ?
The Christian life is a race that requires discipline and endurance.
We must strip ourselves of everything that would impede us.
Weights are things that may be harmless in themselves and yet hinder progress. They could include material possessions, family ties, the love of comfort, the use of leisure time, devotion to hobbies, sports and other activities. They could also include Christian service if done for the wrong reasons and motives – self promotion, praise of others, etc.
In the Olympic races,
there is no rule against carrying a supply of food and beverage,
but the runner would never win the race that way.
We must guard against the notion that the race is an easy sprint,
that everything in the Christian life is rosy.
We must be prepared to press on with perseverance
through trials and temptations.
# ANYTHING that comes between me and God – ROBS God.
# Anything that comes between me and God – BECOMES my god.
# He who offers God second place, offers Him NO place.
# Only one life: ‘twill soon be passed. Only what’s done for Christ will last.
Let me burn out for Thee, dear Lord;
Burn and wear out for Thee.
Don’t let me rust or my life be a failure,
Dear God, to Thee.
Take me and all I have, dear Lord,
And get me so close to Thee
That I feel the throb of the great heart of God
Until I burn out for Thee.
Everything in my life is either a “wing” or a “weight”.
Lord, please reveal to me any “weights” which are hindering me in my devotion to You and Your service.