You can never give up — God doesn’t

The Riverine Herald - - CROSSROADS - Ge­orge Hem­mings

I CAN still re­mem­ber our boys’ first ath­let­ics car­ni­val.

Un­for­tu­nately, I’d missed see­ing them com­pete in many of the events, but I did make it in time to see the 200m sprint.

The gun went off and 20 preps started tear­ing around the oval. But when they got to the half­way point al­most all of them stopped run­ning.

They’d reached the place where the 100m race had fin­ished and they thought they were done! The re­sult was we all started scream­ing that they should keep go­ing.

We can get to this point in the year and feel the same way as those prep kids.

It feels like Christ­mas is right around the cor­ner and the year is pretty much done and dusted.

But of course, there’s still a whole month to go.

We don’t just feel this way at this time, we can all get to points in life where we stop striv­ing for what­ever rea­son.

It might be in our learn­ing, or lov­ing, or work­ing or in just about any area of life. It’s easy to be­come com­pla­cent.

A bit like the par­ents shout­ing at their kids to keep run­ning, the apos­tle Paul urges us to keep press­ing on to the fin­ish line (Phil. 3:12-14).

When we put our faith in Je­sus Christ, Paul says that we’re des­tined for heaven.

But no mat­ter how far we’ve come, there’s still a dis­tance to the fin­ish line and so we need to keep press­ing on.

That’s not to say that we’re striv­ing to earn God’s grace or earn the heav­enly prize.

We have the as­sur­ance of be­ing ac­cepted by God when we trust in Je­sus.

But when we re­ceive the gift of God’s grace, we’re called to live our lives as re­sponse to his love. The im­age Paul uses is of the run­ner close to the fin­ish with their chest puffed out to be the first across the line.

This is the de­ter­mi­na­tion that Paul has in know­ing Christ and he en­cour­ages us to have the same de­ter­mi­na­tion.

We’re not to be­come com­pla­cent and let life take us where it will. Ge­orge Hem­mings Christ Church Angli­can

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