I was a runner. Not the marathon kind of runner. Not even the 5K kind of runner. I didn’t care if my clothing was aerodynamic and it certainly didn’t matter if my feet were laced into running shoes. Actually, I was more of a sprinter. Mad dashes were my expertise. I should probably mention at this point that I was about three years old at the time.
Although exhilarating for me, after several harrowing experiences for my parents, including one of slipping through the door of a store and right out into the street, my parents decided a child harness was the only way their nerves could handle taking me out of a stroller in a public open area setting. They took a lot of heat for putting their child on a leash. But it was worth it to keep me from running off and getting lost or hurt, or worse.
That’s what I have to do with my mind. Put a leash on it. Because, unleashed, my mind can race….wildly fast. It can jump the highest hurdles of conclusions. Without harnessing my thoughts, I can chase rabbits down holes my mind has no business going down.
Putting a leash on our minds may look like avoiding certain movies. Not reading certain books. Saying no thank you to some conversations. We may take heat for avoiding some places. But we are responsible for running this race that God set before us. My race isn’t set before you and your race isn’t set before me. Each of us are responsible – to God – for the race that is set before us. And whatever blinders or measures we need to make sure that we stay on course are necessary to run the race well.
1 Corinthians 9:25 tells us, “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.”
As it turns out this race that Paul described and that we are in is not about how fast we run it…only that we run it well.