“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,”
We’re in THE RACE and we’ve already had the chance to hit on so many big time truths about this race God has set before us! Just a quick run down of what we’ve learned so far;
We’re in a race
The why behind why we run this race?
This race can’t be run with “me” only with “Him.”
Today, we are going to step into some new areas. In this first verse of Hebrews 12 where it talks about the race; the first instruction given so we can run this race in the best possible way is to; “let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely.”
I mean think about this in the context of a race as the writer has set up for us here; you’re a runner and like any runner do you think it would help you be most effective to run the race if you have more weight or less??? The obvious answer is less right?!?! Then, the question I found myself asking is; “why would I continue day after day to hold onto the sin and weights of things in my life and not let them go?” It makes no sense but what stinks is the fact that we do this so often. No matter who you are, we all have sin and weight holding us back from running this race freely and light footed in the best possible way. What convicted me even more is that I have seen and held onto obvious sins in my life for years because they have always brought me what I thought I needed; which is not true because only Jesus can bring those things. But what is this “weight” the writer is talking about here?
I always read this and thought that weight and sin were the same thing, because sin weighs us down too but seeing the “and” in this verse means it’s talking about “weight” as a completely separate thing. So if “weight” isn’t sin then what is it? Well, after doing some digging I learned that “weight” is simply referring to the things in our life that aren’t bad things in and of themselves but when placed above Jesus and what’s most important these things can become something that slows us down, distracts us, and holds us back from running this race in the best possible way.
Examples of weights can be a number of things in today’s world and the scary part is how the enemy uses these things as things that “aren’t that bad,” then we give them more weight in our lives than they need to have. Maybe it’s TV, like watching Netflix or sports, maybe it’s your phone and the time you spend on it scrolling through social media, maybe it’s even food and devouring way too much of it or the most tasty unhealthy of them. These things by themselves are not bad, they are actually good and serve good purposes in our lives but when they are given too much weight in our lives then they can easily weigh us down from running the race towards the most important purpose we have, and that’s living for Jesus and to spread His name in how we live and speak to others.
These weights can be such a trap for us as followers of Christ as the enemy uses them in the sneakiest ways. We see things that aren’t bad necessarily but are they the BEST that God has called us to, the BEST that God has given to us, the BEST that God has called us to run this race in.
I have no answers to tell you what these things are in your life. But I do encourage you today to take some time to really pray and think about what these sins and weights are in your life currently? If you don’t see any, ask God to show you and He will open up more to your eyes than you would ever of imagined. I could easily just tell you and encourage you to throw these things off like it says in this verse but how can throw something off that you don’t know is there? To throw these things off, we first have to understand and realize what these things are. Seriously, I highly encourage you to spend some time thinking about this today and take some inventory on it. If you can’t think of what they could be, or if you don’t want to admit them, just first come to see the purpose God has set before you, the WHY in which you run this race. Does this thing in my life align me with the purpose God has given me to love Him and love others, to share the Gospel with others through how I live my daily life? Do these things help or hurt the way I spend my time? Am I spending more times on these things or on running the race God has set before me? Just really dig deep and ask yourself the hard questions today, find out what sin and weight may be holding you back and then we can move to the next step of throwing these things off.