We get it. You love running. The burn in your muscles. The fresh air. Time alone (or with 30,000 of your closest friends). Pushing yourself to the limit. Since you’ve landed here, chances are you ran (or jogged or walked) in Richmond’s Monument Avenue 10k.
Congratulations on finishing the Monument Avenue 10k! We were there, cheering you on.
But we have a question for you: Of the 30,000 or so people who ran in the Monument Avenue 10k, how many won the prize? Just one, right? Sure, there were lots of categories to win, and everyone got a medal. But…
Only one person finished first.
We’ve found that life also operates much like a race.
“Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win,” the Apostle Paul wrote.
For many of us, “life” is the most challenging race of all. Maybe you’re metaphorically feeling the burn in your legs or you’re soaking up the scenery of your present circumstances and loving every moment. Maybe your family, your studies or your job are pushing you to your limits, and you’re not sure how to finish well. Whatever your circumstances or challenges, we’ve got Good News for you. Together, we can win the race.
The Good News
The Good News of the Bible begins with God. He is the Creator, Owner and King of the universe. He knows everything, rules over everything, and holds everyone accountable for every thought, word, and deed. God is perfect, and He loves us perfectly.
The Problem: Sin
The problem for us is that we live in God’s world, but we live in rebellion against God. Just as God loves us, God made us to know Him, love Him, trust Him, and obey His word. Instead, we live for ourselves. We rebel against God’s perfect ways. The Bible calls this life of defiant rebellion against God “sin.”
Everyone in the world is a sinner. Everyone has thought, said, and done things that dishonor God and violate His standard of perfect goodness. All of us are guilty, and all of us deserve to be separated from God.
The Solution: Jesus
In amazing grace, God loved us even though we turned our backs on Him. We walked away from Him, but He came after us to reconcile us back to Himself. In love, God became a man in the person of Jesus the Messiah. Jesus lived the perfect life we should have lived, and then died the death we deserved to die, taking on Himself the punishment for our sin.
After dying a horrible death on the cross as our substitute, He conquered death by rising again from the dead on the third day. He ascended to heaven and sent His Holy Spirit as a helper to those who trust in Him, sending them into the entire world to spread the Good News of His life, death, and resurrection. At the end of history, Jesus will come again to make all things new.
The Result: Forgiveness and New Life
How should we respond to this Good News about Jesus? He has commanded everyone everywhere to turn away from their rebellion against God and to put their trust in Him, and in Him alone, to save them from their sins and to reconcile them to God. Everyone who turns from their sin and trusts in Jesus alone for eternal salvation is forgiven of all their sins and adopted as a child of God. They are given new life in Him now — lives of meaning and purpose and direction — and they will live forever with Him in glory and joy.
Will you turn from your sin and believe in Jesus now, and begin your new life in Christ?
How do you do this? In prayer, ask God to forgive you of your sins and commit your life to Him. Then, if someone you know has been praying for you, let them know. If this is all new to you, reach out to a Christian church or ministry in your community and tell them you are ready to take the next steps in your faith in Jesus. Or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 800-999-3113. We’d be happy to talk with you and recommend local churches in your area who can help guide you in your new life in Christ.