And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.
Hebrews 12:1–2 (NIV)

“On your marks … ”

The announcer calls out these words at the beginning of every race. They cue the runner to get in position and prepare themselves physically and mentally for what they are about to do. But what would happen if a runner chose not to begin at the mark of their designated lane? They could be disqualified from the race all together. Obviously, being at the right place at the right time is important! It makes the difference between success and failure.

It’s the same in life! If we want to make an eternal impact for the kingdom, we must follow the leading of the Holy Spirit, allowing Him “to shape [our] lives … along the same lines as the life of His Son” (Romans 8:29 MSG). Sometimes this means we must adjust our pace, trusting God’s timing. He may ask us to shift our mindset and choose a slower and more deliberate pace that allows for time alone with Him, instead of chasing fast-track success at the expense of rest. Or it may mean that we stop trying to run in someone else’s lane, recognizing that we are all made with different gifts, called to a unique purpose, and cannot be compared.

The only way to “make a mark” is to be on your mark and to be “ready in season and out of season” (2 Timothy 4:2). Because although lines on a track stay in place, our lives of faith are always moving forward. God loves to take us to new places in Him! It’s only there, in unfamiliar places, that we really learn how to lean not on our own understanding but trust in His faithful character and promises. And as our trust grows, the more we enjoy this journey we’re on with God, unencumbered by worry and doubt.

Examine your life. Where does God have you right now? Where do you think He’d like to take you next? Is there anything you’re holding on to (comparison, worry, impatience) that you can surrender to Him? Let’s ask God to show us how we can best position ourselves to receive from Him today.

Father, thank You that You created us to run! Teach us how to let go of burdens and unhealthy behaviors that weigh us down so we can move and follow You freely. Keep us in the center of Your will, never straying to the left or right, but always keeping in lockstep with You.