Weekday Devotionals

Devotional written by Brenda Nidiffer

 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. Hebrews 12:1 NLT

I have heard many people say they dislike running as a form of exercise, but for me I have always enjoyed it. Well, 'enjoy it' may be a stretch, but I can say it is an exercise I like more than some of the other options out there. It is freeing to be outside and enjoying creation while also trying to stay healthy. It is always fun to see the newest and latest running outfits and shoes all designed to help keep any weight off of the runner so they can run at their top performance level. Such small details as a pair of running shorts over regular atheltic shorts can shave valuable seconds off a runners race times all because the fractions of weight were taken off by choosing the proper shorts. See, what all the companies realize is any additional weight that is not absolutely necessary will weigh the runner down and their results will suffer as a result.

As we come out of Holy Week where lives were forever freed and heavy burdens lifted from the shoulders of those who had been carrying them for far too long, it becomes so important for us to realize what is true for runners is also true for believers. Anything we are still carrying from our  past sins, bad decisions and broken lifestyles before we fully surrendered it all to Jesus will slow us down and hinder the race He has set out for us to run. Jesus’ death not only covered and forgave our most gruseome sins, but also the quiet, non-blaring sins that can become easy to rationalize and keep under the radar. The ones we may possibly think are ok to leave as is or have no idea where to start in making a change.

The reality for all of us is the verse is clear, we are to leave behind / strip away "every weight that slows us down". This includes the sins we try the hardest to hide all the way to the ones we may not think are a big deal because we or things have always been this way. This doesn’t have to be true! Jesus carried every single weight/sin as He took the steps to Calvary, was nailed to the Cross, bled and died for those sins. His body was then placed in the tomb with every single weight and sin for the past, present and future. Three days later the tomb was empty. Every sin, every burden, every weight, Jesus paid for it all and with His resurrection they were gone and the tomb was emptied that day.

Why do we still walk around carrying the weight of sin when Jesus already paid the ultimate price for it? We cannot run the race ahead effectively if we don’t surrender them and let them go. Leave them in the tomb where they belong, burried and gone. We can have freedom and put on the new clothes Jesus purchased just for us. They are free and light! Then and only then can we run our race and win the prize set before us.

What things in your life are you still holding on to?

What did you carry back with you after visiting the tomb over Easter week?

I encourage you to leave it at the feet of Jesus. Let it go today! You may not love running outside, but you will love running the race in the Freedom of our Beautiful Savior!

So blessed to be a part of the Thrive family!




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