We are challenged in these verses to remember that without faith it is impossible to please God (Heb. 11:6) and that we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses and need to run the race marked out for us with perseverance (Heb. 12:1). We must have full reliance on God to finish this race and Jesus must be our focus.
In Hebrews 12:2 the writer says to “fix our eyes on Jesus.” When doing a ropes course at a camp, I was challenged to walk across a wire from one tree to another without falling off.
The key was to keep my eyes focused on the other tree in front of me and not look down.
When I did that, I made it across with ease. When I doubted my footing and looked down, I fell. I am reminded of Peter in the gospels as he is brave enough to walk on the water towards Jesus but fear overtakes him and his eyes are averted to the winds around him. He begins to sink but Jesus immediately stretches out His hand and took hold of him (Matt. 14:26-32). We have this assurance in our lives as well. Jesus is enough and can see us through anything we may fear in life. He is ready and reaching out to us when we fail to have faith that He has us.
Habakkuk 3:17-18 helps us to focus our faith on God the One we worship. This prayer should be our prayer. “Though my eyes cannot see You my heart believes. Though my hands cannot touch You my spirit receives Your embrace. In exalting Your Name I confess that You are the One True God. In offering myself to You I trust in Your unfailing love. When I cannot fathom Your ways, nevertheless I have confidence in You. Even in times of suffering when ‘the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines…yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.’
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