Reflections: While all running races require energy, some make even the toughest spirits quail. Some events demand the strength of the muscles alone, some draw deep into the reserves of the heart. There has been more than one athlete who has lost a race because they lost the will to continue rather than the ability to run. The surprising thing about Paul is that he has shown the way to be both weak and strong; the way to recognise our limitations and failings, and to thrive. He has shown how to both ‘waste away’ and ‘be renewed’. His resilience is extraordinary
precisely because it is so obvious that it is driven by the life that flows from Jesus. So why would he lose heart? He is gaining glory!
Questions: How do the lists of the fruit of the Spirit (eg. Gal 5:22-23) reflect the life that Jesus has won and set as our pattern? If you were to restate your goals in life based on fruits of the Spirit how would they read? How do you recognise ‘inner renewal’ by God so that you can be encouraged and not lose heart?
Prayer: God of the resurrection, you have the power to bring life even out of death. Yet it is so easy to lose heart when faced by the obstacles of the day. Open my eyes to see where you are renewing me, where you are changing me from the inside out. May your
work cheer my heart. Amen.