Repost! Life is a Marathon, Not a Sprint!

While reading my favorite devotional writer, Oswald Chambers, he spoke of the difference between an impulsive individual and a disciple. One who is impulsive sets off on his own course motivated by a moment in time to do some extraordinary thing, this is the quest of the natural man. Impulsiveness can many times prove to be foolish. A s such, it is more the characteristic of the child who has not developed the maturity to look at things carefully, before they act. Chambers says that God gives us a "sense of restraint to impulsiveness". Discipleship, on the other hand, builds its’ actions on the "supernatural grace of God". God-directed discipleship can even be more dramatic than impulsiveness, but it is propelled in the right direction, with the backing of God Almighty.

Chambers states that mankind does not need the grace of God for the crises that come up in our lives, because of the inherent pride that is in human nature – it rises in times of crisis! But what we need the grace of God for is the ordinary, every day walk that we all must take:

20 But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit, Jude 20 (NLT)

It is in our every day walk that we need the power of the Holy Spirit operating in our life, ‘we need to have attained the maturity of the disciple that we learn to be "exceptional in the ordinary things, to be holy in mean streets, among mean people, and this is not learned in five minutes." ("Direction by Impulse", My Utmost for HIs Highest, Oswald Chambers)

What this says to me is that life is a marathon, not a sprint. We cannot live for the dramatic, exceptional times when God speaks through a burning bush, or feeds the five thousand. Rather, we must live in a world where men consciously cheat us from what is ours; when lies are told on us, by our ‘friends’; when you’re next in a long line and someone deliberately walks in front of you to be next; when you’re overlooked for the promotion that you worked ever so hard for; when you give yourself to a husband faithfully and he walks out and leaves you with no support.

We could go on and on describing the injustices of this world and give innumerable reasons why our conduct should be less than that of a Christian because of those injustices. None of them however would fly with our God:

So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you. Romans 12:1-2 (MSG)