Did you know that Dennis Kimetto set the world record marathon time? He ran the complete 26.2 miles in only 2 hours, 2 minutes, and 57 seconds. That’s absolutely amazing!
Next time you see a race, watch closely and you’ll see that the runners put all their energy into running as fast as they possibly can. They don’t get distracted with the yelling and screaming crowd or with the birds flying in the sky above them. Running a race isn’t easy and it takes lots of persistence. Dennis would never have made the world record if he had stopped to take a break or to inspect a tree nearby.
Like Dennis Kimetto we have a race to win. Paul compares the life of Christians to a race in Hebrews 12:1-2. He says, “So let us run the race that is before us and never give up. Let us look only to Jesus. He is the one who began our faith, and he makes our faith perfect.” Let’s stay focused on Jesus throughout every situation we experience, so that we can go home to heaven soon.
Have you ever heard birds early in the morning? Sometimes I wonder how they wake up cheery every morning. Quails are one of the first birds to begin making calls in the morning. They are small, plump birds with a funky floppy thing on the top of their heads. When quail chicks hatch they begin to follow their parents around, so if you see a quail in the spring or summer it is likely you’ll see a few little chicks running along behind it.
The way quail chicks follow their parents reminds me of a Bible verse in Deuteronomy 13:4. It says, “It is the Lord your God you must follow, and him you must revere. Keep his commands and obey him; serve him and hold fast to him.” Just like quail chicks follow their parents wherever they go, we are to follow Jesus’ example and stay close to Him each day.
Pearls are the jewel of the sea. Did you know that it takes up to 20 years for the oyster to make the pearl? Over the years the oyster pulls in sand and smooths it and packs it into a little ball which one day becomes a beautiful treasure.
There is a story in the Bible about a man who was looking for a beautiful pearl. He looked everywhere for the perfect pearl. Finally, one day he found the most beautiful pearl he had ever seen. He had a problem though–the pearl was very expensive. The man wanted the pearl so bad he decided it was worth selling everything he had to get it. I think he must have had a pretty big garage sale! I bet he sold his bed, his clothes, all his favorite things, and then, even sold his house! At last he had enough money to get the pearl he wanted so bad.
Sometimes, treasures in life are hard to find and we have to gives things up. God asks us to give things up at times, but that is because he has something even more beautiful to give us. What can you give up for Jesus today?
Olives are a really yummy snack. Did you know that they are actually fruit and that they grow on trees? There is a really cool story in the Bible about an olive branch. After Noah and his family and all the animals had been in the ark for many days they probably began to wonder if they would ever see dry land again. Noah finally decided to send out a raven to look for dry land. The raven came back very quickly because there was no where to land. Next, he sent out a dove but it returned too. After seven days he sent the dove out again and this time it came back with an olive branch. The olive branch showed Noah that the land was drying and gave him and his family hope that they would soon be able to leave the ark. Seven days later he sent the bird out again but this time it did not come back and Noah knew that they could now leave. Just like the olive branch showed Noah that they would be going home soon we have the Bible to show us that God is coming soon to take us to our heavenly home. We need to make sure we are ready and waiting just like Noah and his family.
Nebuchadnezzar was the King of Babylon. He wanted to be the most powerful man in the world. One night he had a dream that he couldn’t understand so he called all of his wise men and magicians and asked them to tell him what his dream meant, but none of them could. The king was so angry that he wanted to kill these men, but before he killed them, Daniel said that with God’s help he could interpret the dream. God showed Daniel what the king’s dream meant, it was of a huge statue made of gold, silver, bronze and clay; each representing the different nations that would one day rule the world. Nebuchadnezzar didn’t like the fact that his nation would one day come to an end so to show off his power he built a giant statue just like the one in his dream but made it totally of gold. The king was determined that his kingdom would last forever. Here on earth nothing last forever because of sin. Things get old, fade, fall apart, and die. There is nothing that we can do to stop it from happening. However, there is someone who has the power to make things last forever. He has a kingdom that will never end. His name is Jesus and if we follow Him one day we will also be part of the kingdom that never fades.
Moses has many different stories about him. Moses in the basket, Moses the prince, Moses the man that killed an Egyptian, Moses the run away, Moses who spoke to the burning bush, etc. The story that I want to focus on today however is Moses the deliverer. What does deliver mean? Deliver means to set free. So a deliverer would be someone that sets someone or something else free. As you know Moses was born an Israelite but grew up an Egyptian. This probably made it a little awkward for him. Moses was shy, he stuttered when he spoke, and he was afraid. Yet with all of this God still used him. With God’s help he led all of the Israelites out of Egypt and to the promise land.
Have you ever felt like you couldn’t do something because you were shy? Can you recall a time when God used your talents for his glory? Always remember that with God all things are possible!
Light comes from many places; the sun, the stars and moon, flashlights, houselights, car lights, fire, electronics, etc. Light is what helps us see things and guide us places. Without light we would get lost in the dark. Imagine if the sun never rose. You woke up and the sun forgot to wake up with you. What if our houses didn’t have lights, we wouldn’t be able to see what food we were making or know if we needed to clean the house or not. What if cars or planes didn’t have lights, we would have a lot more accidents. Lights aren’t just for seeing though, light also keeps us warm. If candles and fire didn’t have light we wouldn’t realize that it also produces heat. Light is very important. Without it all we have is darkness and confusion. Not having light is kinda like not having Jesus in your life. You can survive but not for very long. You will get lost and confused, you may crash and get hurt, you won’t be happy and won’t feel the warmth of knowing Jesus. Jesus reminds us that “I am the light of the world. The person who follows me will never live in darkness. He will have the light that gives life.” John 8:12. So just like the sun comes up everyday and gives us light and keeps us warm we need to invite Jesus into our hearts to fill us with His light and warmth!