Laying Aside Every Weight
“…let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us…” Hebrews 12:1b
The competitive runner knows that maximum speed is achievable only if all excess weight is removed. While there is no perfect percentage of body fat for every runner elite runners average around 8% – 10%. To maintain that requires great discipline and rigorous healthy training.
For the faith-walking believer, you and I are called to discipline and rigorous training in spiritual things in much the same way the elite runner is called to do in physical things.
“And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.” 1 Corinthians 9:25
Laying aside every weight for us is removing from our daily lives all those things that hold us down and keep us from moving in God’s power more effectively and efficiently, all the things that delay our transformation to becoming more like Christ. Fundamental to all is our physical well-being, our weight, our general health and our mental and emotional level of strength.
When we are overweight we put stress on every area of our lives mentally, emotionally and physically, so we must strive for mastery over our bodies so that we can gain the mastery over all areas of our life.
This is not easy. Believe me, I can bear witness to that! And it becomes even more difficult initially when we have health challenges such as diabetes or behavior induced diseases. But, easy is not what we should be concerned about. Rather, we must first acknowledge to God that this is His summons to us to be truly disciplined disciples and that it is indeed for our benefit that we do whatever it takes to get it done.
As with physical weight we must also lay aside mental and emotional weights such as worldly thinking, false concepts and the lies of the devil that seek to keep us under his control, the lusts of the flesh, the eyes, the body and the mind, evil passions born in the un-renewed heart such as anger, malice, violence, vengeance, greed, envy, jealousy, covetousness and all sin. These weigh us down as surely as, and even more than, physical weight alone.
Laying these aside is made possible only as we renew our minds in the Word of God. As we change our thinking we change our words. As we change our words, we change our actions. As we change our actions we reap the greater fruit of God’s rewards for those who diligently seek Him. Diligence and discipline, sacrifice and steadfastness, self-denial and obedience are the fundamental keys to attaining the prize of those who run to win.
When we are fit and trim our race becomes one we run with patience knowing we run with God’s power, unhindered by the cares and deceptions of this world, but free to run with the wind at our back.