I realized a long time ago that I was a sinner and that I needed to accept the salvation of God through Christ. But I became the “entitlement society.” I allowed my own arrogance and laziness to detract from the gratitude I once had and should have had all along. I was the grumbling Jews when they complained to Moses about God leading them out of Egyptian captivity to die in the desert. I was the King who had everything and therefore lusted after what he didn’t have to attempt to fulfill what only Christ could. I was the dog that eats his own crap because I was used to the food that I was given. Or the grumbling Jews again (gosh those Jews of old grumbled alot!) who got upset with the manna and wanted quail instead. I wanted more, and brighter, and bigger. I wanted the genetically modified dinosaur rather than the classic T-Rex and Velociraptor. I wanted the tomato the size of my head rather than just big enough to fit the burger bun.
I definitely made mistakes in the way I followed Christ and treated my ex-wife. I did not heed the words of God through Paul when He penned 1 Corinthians 9:24 and said “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it.”
A long time ago when I was in high school, I ran cross country. I never took it too seriously but I ran it anyway. My best times were around a 21, give or take a minute. Now, after years of running just to stay in shape I’m trying to get back to that pace, but as a man in my 30’s it is proving reasonably difficult. And some of the things that have happened recently, like spraining my ankle to the point of almost needing surgery have hindered my already frustratingly slow progress. But only one wins the prize, and just like I cannot let the things around me affect my ability to continue to improve my pace, I likewise cannot let the environmental stressors in my life ruin my walk, or as Paul puts it, my run with God. Christians talk about their walks with God all the time, but I think that is an American idea. Americans do everything different and slower, just look at the standard vs the metric systems! But Paul who was decidedly not an American says we need to run.
But first you need to be in the race… And the best way to enter is via what they call the Roman’s road. Which are basically just a handful of verses concisely summarizing why a person needs a Savior.
Romans 3:10 – There is none righteous. No not one.
Romans 3:23 – For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
Romans 6:23 – For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus.
Romans 5:8 – God shows his love for us, in that, while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 10:9-10 – If you confess with you mouth that Jesus is Lord and you believe it in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart man believes unto righteousness and with the mouth confesses unto salvation.
Romans 10:13 – Whoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
And as Steve Jobs would say… It’s just that easy.