"Therefore since we also have such a large cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily ensnares us, and run with endurance the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes on Jesus, the source and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that lay before Him endured a cross and despised the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of God’s throne." — Hebrews 12:1–2
Perhaps more than anyone else, we coaches can appreciate the athletic imagery used in the Bible. The writer of Hebrews encourages his readers to “run the race” that is set before them, and from his words we can draw four encouragements as we run the spiritual race of faith set before us.
First, in the context of Hebrews 11, we run in light of God’s faithfulness to His people. We can view the cloud of witnesses as bearing testimony to us of the faithfulness of God. Second, we run forsaking “the sin that so easily ensnares us” which is, primarily, unbelief in the finished work of Jesus Christ. Third, we run with a focus, “keeping our eyes on Jesus,” which we do primarily by means of the Word of God and through prayer. Finally, we finish the race God has called us to, just as Jesus did.
In our coaching we have an incredible opportunity to teach our teams using the Bible’s athletic imagery, encouraging them to run the spiritual race of faith. Both we and they can run our race in the light of God’s faithfulness, forsaking unbelief, focusing on Jesus, and following the specific path to which God has called them. We have a unique privilege as coaches to seize the moment for the glory of God.
1. Are you personally running the race, increasingly knowing God and His faithfulness?
2. Are you living by faith and cultivating a growing love for Jesus through God’s Word and prayer?
3. Are you setting the example of one who is finishing the race in your family, profession, and church?
Extra Reading: Hebrews 11
Father, I present myself to You as a living sacrifice. From the foundation of the indwelling Christ, fill me with your Spirit so I may function as a coach, living in the light of Your great faithfulness, forsaking sin, focusing on Jesus, and finishing the race to Your glory. Amen.