Happy New Year Friends!

 

“What draws people to be friends is that they see the same truth. They share it.”C.S. Lewis

BDS_9896_webHey, thanks for being our friend! We are seriously THRILLED to be journeying with you into 2016. We’re honored that you would join up with us as we connect to the beautiful, powerful, life-giving help of God’s Word.

At the start of this new year, we just want to encourage you to “run with endurance.” 

Much like running, life is hard.

Some mornings it’s hard to wake up and feel motivated to fight. We are in a fight, you know. Ephesians 6:10-18 tells is calling us to gear up DAILY for war. Timothy 6:12 calls us “fight the fight of faith,” which echoes the words of Paul when he calls us to “take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ.”

Yuck.

When I consider these verses sometimes, that’s my first thought. I’m just being honest.

The natural man within me doesn’t want to wake up every day and run (spiritually or physically!). It makes me tired and sleepy to think about having to wake up and fight every single day.

So what’ll we do? How do we gain strength and endurance so that we can not only run, but run well?

We must be people of vision. We have to run to WIN. Not just run to run. 

Is that not what motivates the Olympians? The ones who conquer great things mainly because they’ve learned to conquer themselves?

Serious runners taste the win before they experience the win. Borrowing from the future moment of victory supplies motivation for the present moment of suffering. 

That’s why Paul is trying to cast a grand vision for us by reminding us in 1 Corinthians 9:25

…they do it to receive a crown that will fade away, but we a crown that will never fade away.1 Corinthians 9:25

The prize is worth it. Believe God. He is telling you that the prize is worth it. Gaining Him is worth it. Seeking first His Kingdom and righteousness is worth it. Loving your family and friends and neighbors is worth it. Saying “no” to sin is worth it.

Be like Jesus, who looked to “the joy set before Him.” He looked and saw that that agony of the cross was worth the gain of redemption. It was worth it for the fruit of obeying the will of God. It was worth it for the great joy that He would gain from having run His race well. 

God’s word helps us become people of vision. We are a short-sighted, self-destructive bunch. That’s one of the many reasons why I would encourage you to be reading the Word of God. It is truly beautiful, powerful, and LIFE-giving. It will help you remember the prize; giving you the strength to run with endurance.

We love you all. Thanks for journeying with us,

– Jonathan and Emily

Run in such a way to win the prize1 Corinthians 9:24

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What does Jesus “need” from you this new year!? … Drumroll please… NOTHING! What does He want “for” you?… EVERYTHING!!! Praying we’ll seek first His Kingdom today in faith and find that treasuring Jesus Himself is better than any resolution we could ever make.

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