Run Hard

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. –2 Timothy 4:7

Not many people would disagree that professional football is a rough, sometimes violent sport. Years ago, during a Monday-night football game between the Chicago Bears and the New York Giants, one of the announcers observed that Walter Payton, the Bears’ hall-of-fame running back, had accumulated over nine miles in yardage by running with the football. Another announcer remarked, “Yeah, and that’s with someone knocking him down every 4.6 yards!”

Walter Payton was one of the most successful running backs to ever play professional football. He knew that everyone—even the best—gets knocked down. The key to his success was getting back up and running again just as hard the next time he took the football.

In the race that is the Christian life, keep your eyes on the finish line and run hard! No matter who tries to cause you to stumble or whatever circumstances knock you off balance, when you fall down along the way, get back up, dust yourself off and get back in the game! Don’t become discouraged and quit! In life, being knocked down is inevitable. But, if you keep your eyes on the Lord and keep running hard, you will be assured of finishing well in the end!

1. When you get knocked down in life, how do you usually respond–with despair–or with determination to get back on track?

2. What can you do today, to do a better job of “keeping your eyes fixed on Jesus”?

Hebrews 12:1-12; 1 Corinthians 9:24-27; Philippians 3:13-14

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Jim Liebelt

Jim is Senior Writer, Editor and Researcher for HomeWord. Jim has 40 years of experience as a youth and family ministry specialist, having served over the years as a pastor, author, editor, consultant, mentor, trainer, college instructor, and speaker. Jim’s HomeWord Culture Blog also appears on Jim and his wife Jenny live in Quincy, MA.

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