“You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth?” – Galatians 5:7
A few days ago our oldest daughter said she was running in a 5K and asked me to run with her. She said she needed a running partner. While I really tried to be a runner, I have settled for fast walker instead. However, inspired by her asking and an amazing friend just completing a 50 mile race, I thought 3 miles should be doable. It was a really cold night, so be bundled up, got numbers pinned to our backs and off we went. We had been told the course and that signs would mark our way. It was a beautiful night and started of fairly easy. After a bit it was getting tougher. With my girl offering encouraging words and a few minute walk, we kept going.
She shared her AirPods with me so we each had praise music going through our ears. By sharing we were able to listen to the same music. It helped us keep the same pace. At one point, a song about being with our Heavenly Father was playing and I was getting tired again. The man in charge of the race came up beside us. I told him I did not feel very light on my feet when I ran. He never stopped running, but gave me a few tips. These few adjustments changed everything. He stayed beside us and then when we went through a dimly lit area, he moved ahead of us. There was so much that resembled life as a Christian that I could hardly stand it.
Being asked to come along someone is such an honor. Our children ask all the time when they are younger for us to be close. They want you to read, play, see and hear them. If you do not take the time, they will eventually find someone who will as they get older. I have found as the kids get older that we as parents have to be the one asking more since their lives expand outside the walls of our home. One thing I love is that my husband and our oldest have a standing breakfast date every Thursday morning. This thrills me to no end! He will do the same with the other 6 children. They never outgrow wanting to be valued, worthy of their time by their parents, in my opinion. Keep pursuing your kids.
Another resemblance was the music. When words of truth are being heard, received and obeyed, unity comes. The “keeping in step” piece is also in place. There was also the correction. I was not running properly. My steps felt hard as they landed and took extra effort. I listened to someone who knew what they were talking about, corrected my thinking and immediately my steps were adjusted. The race seemed to end too soon and I wanted to keep running. However, a dinner was planned to celebrate and then we ran to our car. What a difference correction can make and how fun it is to celebrate.
A few days before our run, I stumbled upon the verse at the top. “You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth?” (Galatians 5:7). What a powerful question, don’t you think? We can look at Christians who start strong, read the Word of God and obey truth, but when things get hard, they stop running and maybe stop talking to God all together. Maybe it was a camp experience and the week away was good, but the reality of home cut in. Perhaps it was a broken heart that cut in, and instead of drawing even closer to the Lord, you somehow blamed Him. Regardless of the who, what, where that cut in, you have left an unfinished race. The time is still ticking and others runners are missing you on the trail. Do you not realize that He has a feast (Revelation 19:7) prepared for those who run home?
I do not know where you are in this story. I pray you are running the race well. I pray that you allow nothing to cut in on you and you press on in truth. There is so much shouting these days and anger abounds. Fear can easily set in and sideline you for the rest of your days. Selfishness can keep you so wrapped up in your own race that you miss the others runners. What a sad opportunity to encourage others. I am thankful for the day with our daughter. It was a gift in so many ways. Don’t miss your race friends.