Have you ever had that experience where there is one scripture that no matter what you’re reading or listening to keeps coming up? Well for weeks now that has been the case for me with Hebrews 12:1-2. Most messages preached at my church will at least reference this verse. My devotions have included it. Podcasts I listen to include it. And my mind keeps going back to it so I believe it is a word in season for not just me but much of God’s church. Please feel free to dig into this for yourselves along with me. It is my prayer that as we dig in and mediate on it together it ignites a passion in you as it has me to embrace this journey/race of life with a tenacious joy. But before we go into this scripture I feel it’s important to start with some of the context in which it was written. Since the Bible was not written separated out by verse numbers and chapters, putting verses in context of what comes before and what comes after can deepen the revelation you get from it. In this case chapter 11 is what we call the faith chapter in Hebrews. It’s like the hall of fame of faithful people throughout Bible. I have read through it many times and it is always encouraging but I recently read through it in the Message translation. The last two versus stuck out to me. They say:
Not one of these people, even though their lives of faith were exemplary, got their hands on what was promised. God had a better plan for us: that their faith and our faith would come together to make one completed whole, their lives of faith not complete apart from ours. Hebrews 11:39-40(MSG)
Their stories even as models of faith are yet to be completed. The same holds true for us. When we pass away there will still be parts of our stories unwritten. This is not to say we won’t accomplish what we were created to however. I see this as God showing us the eternal perspective to our lives. What legacy will you leave behind? Our “race” is not just for us. This life is not just for us. We have a part to play, but it is not to satisfy all our personal and physical desires. Rather it is to participate in the incredible adventure of life to bring Glory to God, and leave a lasting legacy. The reason when we leave this life our full story will yet lay unwritten is that our success in life is contingent on the impact we have on the generations to follow us. What we do today does not just matter just for today, for our families, for our communities and in this time, but forever.
It’s an intimidating statement to make and seems audacious to even write. But there it is right at the end of verse 40. We are not complete apart from others. And that is not bound to time. How do we honor what was labored for from the generations before? How will we change and transform the future for the lives of those to come after us? What part we have to play so deeply matters because of how interconnected we really are. If that does not get you fired up to step out in faith for what God has been speaking to you personally let me continue next week going on to Hebrews 12:1-2.