Weekend Wrap-up

These are just some quick thoughts as I wrap up the last week or two that have been on my mind.

  • I heard a lady on the radio yesterday giving her testimony. She had been living a really rough life, and she wanted to know if God was real. She shared how God revealed Himself in this moment of crisis in an unmistakable way. At the end of the call, she threw in this statement that has stuck with me: “I wasn’t looking for God to change my life; I only wanted to know if He was real. But once I knew that He was real, my life was changed.” I loved that thought. When we experience the reality of who God is and what Christ has done for us, we will be changed!


  • I went to a cross country match to watch a family friend run. What I loved was seeing him at the end, even though he was surely tired, sprint to the finish, even overtaking another runner at the very last moment. This running with the end in sight, with a focus on the finish, was a picture to me of how to run the life of faith which is compared in Scripture at times to a race:

    Hebrews 12:1-2: “Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

  • This week we celebrated the day that my daughter came home from the hospital 14 years ago ago after a three month stay. She was born three months prematurely (27 weeks along, 2 pounds) and came home on her original due date. It’s hard to pass milestone moments like these without pausing again to remember and give thanks to God for her life and His protection over her and for the many miraculous ways we saw His hand at work during those challenging days. These are indeed stones of remembrance.


  • Then finally we wrapped up the football season for my son this week. It was a great season, and I am glad to see his hard work and discipline in the sport, his great coaches who use the sport as a means to bring gospel truths into their lives, and the friendships he has developed.


Verse for the Day – Jude 24-25

Jude 24-25: “Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, To God our Savior, Who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen.” (NKJV)

God is able to keep us from stumbling. My Bible notes point out that we can’t really stumble unless we are already walking or running – as in a race, like we read in Hebrews 12:1-2 last week. Remember we are in a race. God can keep us from stumbling.

He can also present us faultless, without blame, and with great joy, before the presence of His glory. My Bible notes (The Nelson NKJV Study Bible) point out: “Faultless is a Greek word used of sacrificial animals that had no blemish and thus were fit to be offered to God. Only God can save us, cleanse us from our sins, and present us to Himself as faultless, for God is the Author and Perfecter of our faith (see Heb.12:2).” Again a reference to our verses last week – He is the Author and Perfecter of our faith, originating it and keeping it.

PRAYER: Lord, we praise You that You are able to keep us from stumbling. Help us to look to You for help in our race of faith. Praise You that You are able to present us faultless before You by the blood of Jesus and His righteousness. We say and affirm Jude 25 then, “To God our Savior, Who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen.”

Verse for the Day – Hebrews 12:1-2

Did you know you are running a race today?!

After seeing Peter walking on the water and our need to look at Jesus, not the things around us, I am reminded of Hebrews 12:1-2:

“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, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (ESV)

My Bible says “the cloud of witnesses” are the people of faith mentioned right before this in Hebrews 11.

These verses twice says “let us” — giving us actions to do:

  • “let us” lay aside every weight (putting off sin and things that entangle us) and
  • “let us” run with endurance the race before us.

How can we put off sin and run with endurance?

By looking to Jesus, our example. We can put off sin and run with endurance the same way Jesus did. He endured the cross by seeing beyond the moment to the eternal, by considering such suffering and doing His Father’s will a joy! And He is now at the right hand of the throne of God!

PRAYER: Dear Lord, Help us to run with endurance the race of faith that is before us, putting aside everything that entangles and slows us down. Help us to fix our eyes on Jesus who not only will give us our example to follow, but will enable us to do this! And let us run in such a way as to win the prize (I Corinthians 9:24-25), looking to Jesus and knowing we will receive a reward and be blessed in this obedience. In Jesus’ name, Amen.