Choosing How to Run
Each day, we get to choose where we live. I’m not talking about geographics. We can choose to live in our past or we can choose to live for the future. We cannot do both.
It’s true that our circumstances today can be a direct result of our past and the choices we have made. Sometimes our circumstances are the result of choices made by others. Yet we don’t need to continue to be influenced by those choices or wallow in our station.
Equipped to Run
Our circumstances do not need to define our walk with God. If we choose to follow these goals, we can live in the present and aim for the future instead of being bogged down by our past. To forget our past and strain forward, as a runner set to begin a race, we need this equipment:
- A personal Knowledge of Christ. It must be a first-hand experience – that is Salvation. God does not have grandchildren. Your relationship with God must be your own! Phil. 3:8
- A personal Position found in Him – that is justification. [Just As If I Never Sinned.] Phil 3:9. Your position is based on your relationship with Jesus, and not because you go to church or were raised in a Christian home.
- Personal Power – that is Sanctification. [An ongoing process of being set apart by God.] Phil. 3:10, 11. We can’t live off someone else’s bank account. Nor can we exist on someone else’s salvation or their “works”.
- Personal Perfection – that’s Holiness. [It’s laying hold of Jesus because Jesus laid hold of me.] Phil 3:12, 13. It’s personal and authentic and has nothing to do with anyone else.
- Personal Possession of Christ – that’s being Christ-like. Phil 3:14. We can’t live what doesn’t belong to us. No relationship with Christ means we can’t become like Jesus. Authenticity is the key.
Our Focus for the end of the Run
When we focus on these things, we will forget what is behind and reach for what is ahead of us. If we are unable to let go of our past, we become like the runner who keeps looking back to see his competition. Like this runner, we will lose our position, our peace, and our place in the race.
When we become like the runner who runs with his face set before him, we are living in today. By forgetting the competition and focusing, instead, on the prize, we live for tomorrow.
Defining How You Run
Don’t let your past define who you are today. Don’t let your past define your future. Throw off what hinders and entangles you. Run the race! Because of your knowledge, your position, your power, your perfection, and because you possess Jesus Christ, you can run! Run with perseverance, and you will win the prize!
Straining Toward the Goal
8 Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith—10 that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead. 12 Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.