My friend, Sara, is a runner. She’s fast and she’s strong. Several years ago we were both training for the same race. Her goals were much different than mine. My goal was to run a better race than I had the year before. Her goal was to win. And she really had a shot.
The day of the race dawned hot and humid. I was excited for my race, but I was really excited for Sara.
The race is an up-and-back through beautiful Virginia country side. At my pace, Sara passed me coming back as I was running toward the turn-around. She was beautiful. Fluid and fast, and with the frontrunners. Her goal was in sight.
I don’t know what was going through Nate’s mind as he stood on the sidelines and watched his wife sink, but I know what he did. He pushed through the crowd, dodged the runners, and made it to his bride. As the next round of runners swirled around them and crossed the finished line, Nate helped his wife up and supported her as she crossed the finish line.
We all have a race to run. And honestly, none of our races are going to match our plans. Life is full of pain, and sorrow, and disappointment. Sara didn’t win the race. She needed medical care. And now she has to be particularly mindful of running in hot and humid conditions. Sara didn’t win the race, but she did cross the finish line … with Nate’s support. And we need support too.
We need each other.
This week, we’ve begun to meet at the riverside. Here we’re going to linger and learn to love God, love each other, and live out the gospel in our world. And, I’d love to see us come to support for each other as we run our race. Because really, we need each other. Welcome to the riverside.
We’re gathering Monday – Friday at the riverside, just like Lydia and her sisterfriends gathered alongside a river in Philippi many years ago. We’re reading the book of Philippians, verse-by-verse, and applying it to our lives. Monday – Thursday, I open with a story, introduce a verse or two, and encourage you to apply it to your life. Friday we look back at the week so that the beautiful truths God has been speaking to us get more firmly rooted in our hearts. Here’s where we’ve been this week…
Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi, with the overseers and deacons:
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in your will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:1-6
Sara Hagerty, my fast friend, writes at Every Bitter Thing is Sweet. She writes beautifully about motherhood, adoption, and ushers readers into worship through Morning Chai Devotions. And she has really cute kids. If you don’t yet know Sara, please head on over to Every Bitter Thing is Sweet. You’ll be glad you did!
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