Today’s reading is Hebrews 11:1-12:29.
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us…” (Hebrews 12:1).
What a cloud of witnesses: Able, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Rahab, Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets. Here are children of God that wrestled with different issues, committed different sins, struggled in different ways. But they all had one thing in common. They believed God. Because they believed God, they cast off their sins, their doubts, their hindrances and they grabbed hold of God.
Instead of letting the obstacles get in the way, they held on to God and received His blessing. I can’t help but think of Jacob wrestling with the angel as a very literal example of this. Here are people just like me who increased their faith and through that cast off their weight and sins. Because they removed the excess baggage, they were able to run with endurance the race God set before them. I can do the same. The fact is I can’t become more like Christ if I continue to feed the obsession with sin. I have to stop feeding it, cast it off, quit pursuing it. I have to let it go even if it means cutting off my own hand or plucking out my own eye. Half measure will avail nothing.
Today, instead of hanging on to my sins, I must lay them aside, no matter how closely they cling. Then I will be able to run with endurance.
Keep the faith and keep reading,
PS. What struck you in today’s reading?