March 27, 2019

BIBLE READING: GALATIANS 5

We are thankful for our pastoral staff here at Kerwin and it is always good to hear insight from each of them concerning God’s word. As we continue our Bible reading schedule for this year, Enjoy this devotion today from Frank Newsome, our youth pastor.

Galatians 5:7 King James Version
7 Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth?

So, I have a confession to make. One of my guilty pleasures is watching My 600 Pound Life, in fact I’m watching an episode while I am writing this devotional (real spiritual I know.) If you’re not familiar with the show it follows an individual who weighs in excess of 600 lbs for an entire year on their journey to lose weight, and adapt a more healthy lifestyle. The episode I am watching this evening is about a young woman named Maja (Maya) and her boyfriend named Christian, and three months into the process Maja has lost an incredible 102 lbs. She is doing very well in her attempt to become healthy. She’s following the diet very strictly, she’s working out four to five times a week, she’s going to counselling and therapy once a week to deal with the emotions attached to her unhealthy habits. I guess you could say Maja is doing very well in her journey. Then something happens, actually several things happen to Maja that change the course of the path that she is on. She has a huge fight with her mom, has some feelings resurface in her relationship with her father, and probably most devastating, her boyfriend Christian decides he doesn’t want to be in the relationship anymore. Long story short here Maja over the course of the next few weeks begins to gain all the weight back that she had lost, eventually dropping out of the program all together. I’ve seen several of these episodes, and I’ve never seen anyone as devoted to the process as Maja. I was thinking to myself “if anyone is going to succeed at this it’s going to be her, she is so dedicated.” So what happened? She allowed some feelings, some fight, some relationship to distract her from the goal that she set for herself, and eventually threw in the towel.

As I look at verse 7 in Galatians 5 I’m reminded that Paul has likened our Christian life to a race, and Paul says to the church at Galatia that you use to run this race well, you served the Lord with such passion and dedication, the truth of God’s word was something that you obeyed. In an effort to address what has happened Paul asks the question “who did hinder you?” There were some false teachers that the church had began to follow, and to listen to, and it had gotten them off course in the race of the Christian life. As I think about the application of this verse in my own life I began to think back, was there a time that I ran a better race for the Lord, was there a time where I was more dedicated, more obedient? I direct that question to you today. Has your race bogged down? Are you off course for the Lord? If the answer is at one time I ran a better race, I was more obedient, then let me ask you this question. Who or what hindered you? Working with teenagers on a weekly basis I know that peer pressure is a real temptation, but peer pressure is real for us adults as well. Is it some person that hindered you? Some relationship? Maybe it’s some secret, besetting sin, or maybe it’s a lack of faith in some area. I encourage you today, take some inventory of your race for the Lord, and if you’ve gotten off track somewhere determine to get back in the race. Determine to run without distraction, refusing to be hindered or tripped up. Just imagine what the Lord could do with us as a church if we all just made the decision to “Run Well?”

Frank Newsome