"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (Hebrews 12:1-2, NIV)
We drove several hundred miles yesterday and our nerves were shot when we returned home. Too many automobiles wandering all over lanes of travel, too many unannounced lane changes, and too many distracted drivers made for some harrowing white knuckled driving.
We were called to Wilkes Barre to shuttle an automobile for one of our sons. The drive up on secondary roads was filled with several incidents that made us both shudder and drive with more intention. On our way back home, we used Interstate I-80 and more dysfunctional operator moments occurred.
One particular gent was rumbling along in his big pick-up. He passed us and moved on. It wasn't long till my cruise controlled car caught him and passed the big pick-up. As I glanced over, his head was tilted down looking at something (supposing it was a phone). Um, okay. A one time event like this sets me on the wheel a little closer and I keep a friendly connection to all my mirrors. Within a couple miles guess who went roaring by? Yep, big truck. And within another couple miles guess who I passed again? Yep, big truck. Wanna guess what the driver was doing? AGAIN? I can tell you he was not counting the dimples on his steering wheel upholstery. I would love to tell you that this happened only two times. It did not. Count another couple revolutions of me passing him and him passing me and you'll be close (all with his head looking downward).
I wonder if that is what our faith walk looks like on some days? We are so focused and making really good time in growing our relationship with Jesus and then distractions come. We slow down and tend to our phones, our PC, our TV, or some other life draining distraction. Life and especially opportunities to serve God go breezing by. We miss them since our eyes are looking down into our lap or hand.
Does Jesus roll by and see us looking away? Does he grouse about our inability to stay the course and keep our eyes on Him? Does he toot the horn to get our eyes back where they belong? When he told the fishers to leave their nets and follow him, he didn't strong arm them. He left it up to the hearer to react; he does the same for us. We choose to drop everything and follow Him. We start with energy and good intention, then falter and attend to other things. Soon those things begin to affect our witness and we get tangled in a real mess.
"Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." (Hebrews 12:2, NIV)
Let's decide to run the race set before us and to do so with intention, attention, and concentration. We have one job. Let us do it well. Follow Jesus today.