Hebrew 12:1-”Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.”
In the verse above Paul is encouraging us to strip off or lay aside every weight that hinders or trips you up! Amen right?!? I always thought it sounds like a no brainer that Paul would have to tell us to do that. I mean, who likes to be tripped up?!?! Why does He have to tell us? It’s because we all have weight that maybe were not aware of.
In this blog I want to encourage you to loose & trim some weight! What??? Ok ok… before you check out and think that this is some new fitness/eat your vegetables blog just KEEP READING! So what kind of weight are we talking about? We’re talking about Anything that slows you down from God’s purpose in your life.
The question is…what’s slowing you down? What’s keeping you from running the race the God has set for you?
• Self image
• Video Games
The question is how much farther or faster could you go if you dropped some weight? Again what is Weight? It’s anything that is slowing you down from God’s purpose in your life.
In the verse below Paul likens following God as how an athlete would prepare themselves.
1 Corinthians 9:24-27- “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.” If we want to have all that God wants for us then we must set aside anything or anyone that might slow us down.Today I want to talk about one of the largest weights that teenagers put on constantly. It’s called the…. Acceptance weight. We put this weight on when we live our life seeking approval from others.
1 Corinthians 4:3-5- “As for me, it matters very little how I might be evaluated by you or by any human authority. I don’t even trust my own judgment on this point. 4 My conscience is clear, but that doesn’t prove I’m right. It is the Lord himself who will examine me and decide .So don’t make judgments about anyone ahead of time—before the Lord returns. For he will bring our darkest secrets to light and will reveal our private motives. Then God will give to each one whatever praise is due.”
Paul recognized that it only truly mattered what the Lord thought about him. Paul did not live a life trying to please everybody and fit it. Don’t get me wrong, everyone wants to be accepted and loved. But the danger is when we look more for acceptance at the risk of being or doing anything to get approval. We should not be ashamed to live for God as a teenager and say no to certain things! Dangerous thing about this weight is that it can make you spend your energy trying to please those around you, and when you live a life trying to please and be accepted by others you could began to compromise. We must spend our time and energy trying to be who God called you to be!
You see, in life you will be criticized for what you say or do. We must not be ashamed to live for truth and stand up for righteousness in a dark world. God needs you to be a light for others to follow! Every great man of God was talked about and criticized, but what they did during that time was important. Let me close the blog with this verse, Galatians 6:9- “So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.”
I encourage you as a young person to not give up or get tired of doing the right thing. God is using you more than you know! People are looking for truth and God wants to use you to light the way. The devil wants us to give into peer pressure and compromise our standards, but guess what, the same spirit that raised Christ from the dead lives in you! Let’s throw off the acceptance weight and be bold to stand up for what we believe and run the race that God has set before us. The truth is, that nothing will truly last or satisfy you like the purpose of God. God has great plans for you so let’s not let anything slow us down!
by Pastor Marcus Criner-Anchor Faith St. Augustine