28th September 2020
“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Hebrews 12:1-2 (NKJV)
I can still remember the night quite vividly.
One day when in I was in high school the sports master (PE Teacher today), declared there would be a series of sporting events over a week. Every student was to participate in at least one event.
For some reason I chose the 100m freestyle swimming event which was to be held one evening at the local 50m pool (I could swim OK but never competitively).
On the night of the event we all stood on the starting blocks and then dived into the pool on the starter’s signal. I swam my heart out, and I could hear the cheering from the sidelines as I made the 50m mark and turned for the final 50m.
However, about halfway up the pool, I was aware there was no sound - no cheering - all was silent. Why? Everyone else had finished, and there was me splashing in the pool dead last.
The writer to the Hebrews tells us that as Christians we are running a race, but also makes a point of telling us that we are surrounded by a great cloud - a multitude - of witnesses who are cheering us on.
I am so glad that regardless of where I may feel I am in that race, I have the host of heaven behind me and they don’t stop cheering for me - or you!
We may not understand exactly how the witnesses see us or cheer us on, but think about this; Peter had an angel encourage him and free him while in prison, Moses and Elijah had a conversation with Jesus and three of His disciples, and Cornelius received direction from an angel.
You have a heavenly audience, and that audience is watching and cheering you on, and unlike my high school crowd, they will not stop cheering you on.
Unlike my swimming event, we are not competing with others but we are allocated our own lane to run in, and heaven is believing for you to gain the heavenly prize intended for you.
Therefore run your race knowing you ARE being cheered on, even if you can't always hear it.