Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Running for Joy

runners in their marks at a starting line
Author Biography

    Cassey Nathan joined CBN in 2022 and is the product owner of the CBN Bible and myCBN apps. She and her husband live near Houston, TX, where they serve at their local ministry Kingdom Church of Houston. Cassey enjoys playing and singing worship songs. She looks forward to getting the Father's business done while awaiting the return of Christ.

Related Topics
Cassey Nathan - Product Owner

One of the most exciting things for me about the Olympic games is watching an athlete's backstory and seeing what it took for them to reach such a prestigious opportunity to compete against the world’s greatest athletes. Sometimes, an athlete comes from humble beginnings and has trouble affording the costs of making it to the competition. I even remember a story of one whose shoes wore out from so many hours of rigorous training. Nevertheless, these athletes are most known for their wins and not so much for the setbacks they’ve had in life.

I particularly enjoy watching the track and field competition. Some run short distances, some relay, and some run long distances. The long-distance races amaze me the most. I believe there's something that must occur in a long-distance runner's mind—never quit! 

The Apostle Paul talks to the believers in Corinth pointing out the similarities between being a Christ-follower and being a marathon runner. 1 Corinthians 9:24 says,

“Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it.” (ESV)

The Hebrews writer in Chapter 12:1 admonishes us: “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.” Sins are pretty straightforward and undeniable setbacks to living out our faith well. I have found that being offended by others would also qualify as a weight that hinders our spiritual growth.

John 16:1 is a little-known commandment from the Lord: "These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended."

When we are offended, we usually harbor the hurt and pain and start operating in unforgiveness. And we all know that harboring unforgiveness breeds spiritual trouble. Jesus had every right to be offended, yet He remained faithful even unto death. One word from the Scriptures about this spoke volumes to me—joy! It was because of the joy that would be available to Him on the other side.

"... looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, ..." (Hebrews 12:2, emphasis mine)

Not only does the Hebrews writer encourage us what to do, but he tells us how to do it. We as believers must keep our eyes on Jesus. Jesus was persistent. 

Each of us needs to continue our race. When offenses come, we can reflect on how Jesus responded. Joy is on the other side of our trials, too. When the sorrow and suffering is behind us, we can tell the world how the Lord helped us through it. We will bring so much hope to those who have heard our testimony. We must keep our eyes on the prize—joy is coming. 

Can God change your life?

God has made it possible for you to know Him and experience an amazing change in your own life. Discover how you can find peace with God. You can also send us your prayer requests.

We encourage users who wish to comment on our material to do so through our CBN Facebook page.

Loading Webform

Can We Pray For You?

Error: There was an internal error submitting your form. Please check your information and try again or call us at 1-800-759-0700

Get FREE "He Cares for You" teaching sheet

Build up your faith as you meditate on inspiring Scripture verses of how much God loves you

Get more than a Sunday sermon. Get to know others seeking God’s guidance and wisdom for life.
We are here to help and encourage you! Send a prayer request now, or call 1‑800‑700‑7000
Can God change your life? God made it possible for you to know. Discover God's peace now.
Download the free myCBN app. Share your prayer requests, receive prayer and pray for others!
Living the Christian life is a journey. Discover steps to bring you closer to Christ.
Get Email Updates
Give Now