Finish Strong | Acts 20:23-24
Acts 20:23-24 I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me-- the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace.
It was pure art. She ran effortlessly. Her legs glided down the track. Her arms were pumping in what looked like three-quarter speed. And yet, she distanced herself from the rest of the runners. As the 100 meter first place timer, my eyes were on her. She, no doubt, was the winner. But then…with about twenty meters to go, she committed the cardinal sin of sprinting. She looked back to check out the runners behind her. The motion disrupted her stride and caused her to stumble. She fell hard; her body skidding on the track. In great pain, she crawled over the finish line…in third place.
I will never forget that moment and the lesson God taught me. Stumbling can occur even when you are ahead and almost finished. It’s great to start well. It’s important to run hard. But you have to finish strong. That is Paul’s desire in this passage. He knows the race will not be easy. His future days include prison and hardship. But he is committed to finish the race and complete the task that Christ has given him. Nothing else matters.
What about you? Are you on target to finish the race and complete the task that God has given you? Are your eyes fixed on Him? Is your focus so intense that nothing else matters? What is the Spirit compelling you to do? Life is too short to be running the wrong race. The race is too important to run without determination and focus. So run hard! And finish strong!
Father, You have given us a great race to run. Help us to look forward; to push ahead; to keep our focus. Help us to run hard and finish strong. In Jesus’ name. Amen.