This August 13th we are celebrating 50 years of Northeast Baptist being constituted as a Church. There were many individuals that came together to reach out to people in the Northeastern part of Clinton, Missouri with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Other people joined, and as a result of the enduring faithfulness of Christ and the enduring obedience of His people, Northeast Baptist Church is here today. Praise the Lord for those who ran the race with endurance.
Hebrews 12:1-3 says, “Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy 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 has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”
Too many times I find myself not wanting to run the race that is set before me. I would rather run the race I see another running because that race seems easier. Or there are more accolades in that race. I have not learned the art of contentment in all things.
We are called collectively as a church, and personally as individuals, to run the race with endurance. This means we are to be constant in our daily walk with Christ, and obedient in all He calls us to do. We are to keep-on-keeping-on. This is not a flash in the pan. A momentary burst of excitement and energy is not a true reflection of spiritual growth. Many Christians spend their time remembering when things were good, productive. Looking at the past is important, but dwelling on it is draining on the soul and counterproductive to the call to run today. Jesus said it this way in Luke 9:62, "No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God." Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 9:10, “the plowman ought to plow in hope, and the thresher to thresh in hope of sharing the crops. We should be looking forward to what the Lord is doing and what He will do, as we are running in obedience after Him. Our faith is to grow continually. It is not a onetime acquirement that we have procured in order to place on a shelf to display. Faith gets dirty and uncomfortable. It reaches into places where there is no hope in order to bring the light of hope, Jesus Christ. All this is done in and through Christ. Let’s be faithful to carry the baton and pass it on to the next generation. Let’s run with endurance the race set before us.