I hope you enjoyed the notes from my first session of the youth day. I am posting the second session notes starting today. Same idea, the lesson was focused on Hebrews 12:1-2 “run with endurance.” I looked what it takes to run successfully and the first part of the lesson was to run your race with…
This is a hard one! Literally! To keep going when everything seems to be too hard, when it is crashing in around you. When you are so tired and hurt that all you want to do is stop, it takes so much to keep going, to push forward! Your body reaches a point where you wonder if you can make that next step. Our race is a marathon, not a sprint! And sometimes it can feel more like an obstacle course! It is the same way spiritually. We reach points in our lives when we wonder if we can go on. When we question whether our sins are too bad to be forgiven? Something bad is happening in our lives and we wonder why God doesn’t take it away. We feel defeated.
We have an ultimate example of what it means to endure, what it means to give everything you have and never stop. Heb. 12: 1-3 “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, 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of ourfaith, 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. 3 For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.”
We are to consider Him and all He endured for us when we want to give up. To remember His sacrifice and all it cost Him when we are struggling to move forward, to understand.
Christ is our example! But it is impossible to endure if we are weighted down with sin, doubt, distractions. Things that will only hold us down and make us slow and unsteady on our feet.
Jesus warned against the dangers of distractions, of being deeply rooted so we would be able to endure the tribulation and persecutions in this world in His parable of the sower/soil. Matt. 13:3-9, 18-23 If we aren’t rooted in God and have the purpose that we are going to live for Him it will be so hard to endure! We must be like Daniel who purposed in his heart that he was going to live for God no matter what came his way. (Daniel 1:8)
We must be careful not to let things of this world distract us and get us off course. We must remember though we are in this world it is temporary, with all its problems and distractions and we must try not to get tangled up in them.
2 Timothy 2:3-4 “You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.”
David tells us to keep going til the end! He wasn’t going to give up because life wasn’t going his way, wasn’t easy, there were giants in his way!
Psalm 119:32-33 “I will run the course of Your commandments,For You shall enlarge my heart. Teach me, O Lord, the way of Your statutes, And I shall keep it to the end.”
We must remember we are not perfect. We are not going to run perfectly. We are going to stumble and fall at times, but we must get up. We must keep going for Him! We must press on!
Phil. 3:12 “Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me.”
The key to enduring what ever this life throws at us and keep living for Christ… Love!
1 Cor. 13:4-7 “Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
We can endure all thinks with Love for God and knowing His great love for us!
Hope you enjoyed the first part of this lesson! Watch out the next few days for the remainder of it!