“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.” Hebrews 12:1-2
People often ask, “How long do I have to wait for _____ to come?” Success, money, dreams, friends, a spouse, etc… the blank can be filled with an endless variety of things. Waiting well is one of the hardest concepts to grasp as a believer. It’s even harder to understand how we can “run the race marked out for us” — or, as I like to say, run the race of your season– when it might not feel like we’re making any headway at all—especially during a year where we’ve experienced a global pandemic and all of its economic ramifications.
Ecclesiastes reminds us that there is a time for everything under the sun. We look at leaders like Moses, who spent his first 40 years in Egypt and his second 40 years on the backside of the desert, saving his last 40 years for leading the people of Israel— and never making it to the promise land himself. We look at Jesus, who wasn’t commissioned into the active parts of his ministry until he was 30.
Yet, in the present day, our fast-paced culture has programmed us to desire instant gratification in all pursuits. It’s why people have no problem spending $1000 credit on electronics but cringe at the idea of investing a certain percentage of their income. They can’t see it or touch it immediately. We have to learn how to be content while simultaneously recognizing the callings in our current season.
Firstly, you have to be able to define where your current season is. You can’t set future goals if you don’t know where you are in the present. For example, I teach that Wealth building begins with locating where you are, financially and personally. My trademarked Triple X Theory helps with that.
Once you have an idea about where you are, you can start running. Paul’s motivational speech in Hebrews 12 carries enough charisma to charge any believer into a deeper desire to run with Jesus. The first two verses contain three calls to action that provide an excellent roadmap for what committing to the race of our current season could look like.
Action Step 1: Throw off Everything that Hinders
Professional runners wear short shorts for a reason. The less fabric, the less weight there is hindering their ability to move quickly. Note that sin isn’t the only thing that hinders us— poor time management can as well. In each season, it is important to take stock of your current responsibilities and goals. Get with God to reflect on the things that are consuming the most of your time. Do they appear to be contributing to the short-term and long-term goals you believe He is calling you to?
Remember that the objective is order, not perfection. There are 5 major areas that require balance in life: faith, family, friends, feelings, and finances. The key to achieving order is ensuring that your time isn’t so wrapped up in one single category that it robs from another area.
Action Step 2: Run with Perseverance
This language reminds us that we’re in this for the long haul. By definition, perseverance means to persist in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. Jesus reminds us that in the world, we will face challenges. We have to choose to grow through, rather than avoid, the hard things that appear to interrupt our path. Recognize that if your current season is hard, it doesn’t necessarily mean you are doing anything wrong. It doesn’t even mean that you are off-track. It simply means that you are human and that you can overcome with Christ.
Most people live and die in a non-growth environment. Once they graduate, many people stagnate their process of learning and discovering. One way to run the race of your season with perseverance is to choose pathways that, though they might be risky and uncomfortable, position you in a place of growth.
Action Step 3: Fix Your Eyes on Jesus
This is perhaps the most important action statement of the entire verse. It is too easy to lose focus on our ‘why’. When we don’t have clear motivation, we become exhausted and discouraged. When we don’t realize WHO we’re working for, we put too much pressure and self-centered energy on our season.
Jesus was the most purpose-driven individual to ever exist on the planet Earth. He did everything in perfect timing, for the Kingdom, without any desire for self-gain. He lived a life of sacrifice in the hardest of seasons. Best of all, He loves us enough to equip us for that same standard of living.
If you become anxious or worried that you will never “arrive”, take time to refocus on the fact that it’s not about any sort of destination. It’s not even about you. When we fixate on Jesus, our pursuits align with His vision, gain power, and change the world. Choose to focus on what God has given you this Thanksgiving. Where you are right now is a great place to be.
Billy & Becky Epperhart
I hope this post has encouraged you. What is Hebrews 12:1-2 mean to you? If you want to learn more about how to run the race of your season and build your finances in this season, WealthBuilders is hosting our last workshop of the year in December, Investment Mastery! Right now, we’re offering $50 off your ticket. All you have to do is click here and enter the coupon code “50INVEST″