Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls! (Hebrews 12:1)
Study how he did it - those are big words, but if we were to truly take them to heart, just imagine where we could be! Nothing standing in our way that we cannot overcome - nothing shutting us down even before we begin. Keep your eyes on Jesus - study how he walked alongside a bunch of people who didn't always model the values he did, what responses he gave when things weren't exactly going his way. There is something powerful in just studying the ways and words of Jesus - it can open our eyes to little ways we can 'adjust' our lives so that we aren't just blazing our own trail in life.
What we will discover most about Jesus is that he never wavered. He never lost sight of the goal - it was always set before him. The cross was his mission - his purpose was to bear upon himself the sins of all mankind - to become the perfect sacrifice for those 'parasitic sins' that seem to cling to each of us. Jesus did more than 'put up with' stuff along the way, though. He actually responded to it - sometimes with silence, at others with words that were kind, but carried a wallop of conviction to the hearer. He knew when to respond - when to just stay still and allow the stillness to do the work that needed to be done.
We might each learn a bit more if we were to just remain still a bit longer. Stillness is probably one of the hardest things for our society today - we just seem to need noise and movement in order to 'meditate' and 'ponder'. I took a short vacation a couple weeks back and it rained and rained. I usually love to get my rod out into the waters a few times on those weeks away, but we only managed to get to the lakeside one day because of all the rain. That time of just sitting there, watching the water, listening to the fish jumping, seeing the joy on the child's face who catches his first fish - those are precious times.
We need 'precious times' with Jesus. We need to be still. In the stillness, we can often see our where our true focus is directed. I am most convicted in the stillness - when I realize just how much 'parasitic sin' I still have clinging to me - how much I have bumbled and stumbled along without really listening to his voice. Learn FROM Jesus how to be LIKE Jesus - this is what is laid out for us today. How? Study how he lived - his words are only a small portion of who he is - we need to study his actions and his reactions. If you haven't really noticed - Jesus seldom reacted - he acted and the world took notice. Just sayin!