“Demas has deserted me because he loves the things of this life…”
This is such a sad verse. Demas was Paul’s friend, yet he was able to walk away from Paul and, apparently, his own faith as well because, “he loves the things of this life.” I love the things of this life, too! I suppose that most of us do. With God’s help, however, I want to love the things of the Kingdom more. Demas did not finish his Race. We can all win the Race that we are running but we do have to finish it. Here are a few thoughts on finishing strong.
1. Run Straight– We have to stay true to our convictions and the vision that we are pursuing. The writer to the Hebrews said that we run, “keeping our eyes on Jesus.” We have to stay focused on Him as we run and not allow ourselves to get distracted by the shortcuts and distractions that we encounter during our race. Jesus is always the True North on our internal compass.
2. Don’t Get Tripped Up by Sin– Athletes in the First Century competed in the nude. Now that is a rough visual, but the principle is that we strip off anything that might trip us up. We don’t want anything to slow us down. Destructive mindsets, sinful habits, and unhealthy relationships need to be cast aside so that we can run without falling.
3. Don’t Look Back– Once we start running the Great Race, it is dangerous to keep looking back. Where our eyes go, our body soon follows. Paul said that he runs, “Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.” Leave your past behind you. Our future is in front of us, not behind us!
4. Stay Connected– Running is hard enough by itself. Running with a friend makes it so much better. The Christian life is the same way. We cannot do it on our own. Jesus did not give His followers a “To Do List” before He left. He gave them a meal. Communion is about being connected to each other as much as it is about being connected to Christ.
How is your Race going?
Annie and I are serving the Lord in Curitiba, Brazil. Would you consider being a part of our support team? Just click here to get involved. Obrigado!