August 15, Saturday

REPOST Today’s Spiritual Food for Thought, provided by Pastor Barry Kang who heads Symphony Church in Boston, was first posted on April 6, 2013.  He is a graduate of Stanford University (BA), Fuller Theological Seminary (M.Div.) and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (D.Min.).

Spiritual Food for Thought for the Weekend

“Training Ourselves to Run a Marathon”

1 Timothy 4:7

“Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness.”

annie-spratt-Z6yN7aaER3Y-unsplashIn my high-school years I ran cross-country, and I remember having aspirations to run a marathon one day.  As the years have gone by, I have given up on those aspirations!  One of the reasons being that marathons almost always seem to be held on Sundays, and I’m too holy to miss church!  😊

But it so happens that the Boston marathon is held every year on a Monday, and so the thought once in a while crosses my mind.  What if I could run?  What if someone paid the entrance fee of thousands of dollars for me, and I was given an opportunity to run the Boston marathon this year?  Would I be able to finish?

And the answer would be a resounding NO!  The main reason I wouldn’t enter the Boston marathon is not because of the day it’s held, but because I couldn’t run a marathon right now.  Even if my entire church lined up the entire way and cheered me on, I could not run a marathon the whole way.  I’m just not in good enough shape.  I would need to train.  A lot.

It takes more than the opportunity to run a marathon.  It takes more than having motivation and determination.  It takes training, lots of training.  This is obvious.  Running a marathon is about training more than trying.

One of the greatest little books I’ve read on spiritual transformation is The Life You’ve Always Wanted by Pastor John Ortberg, from which I drew this nugget of wisdom: “Spiritual transformation is not a matter of trying harder, but of training yourself wisely.”

Here’s the thought for today.  What if running the race of life is a little like running a marathon?  What if following Jesus is not a matter of trying to be like Jesus, but training ourselves to be like Jesus?  More on this tomorrow.

Prayer: Father, I thank You that You forgive my sins anew every morning.  I thank You that the blood of Jesus covers every one of my sins.  And now help me to train myself so I can be more like Jesus.  Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: 1 Chronicles 6-7

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