Strip It Down

Strip down, start running—and never quit!
Hebrews 12:1 – The Message

Imagine an elite track athlete lined up to race wearing gear like she is about to go snow skiing down a black diamond slope. Her outfit is complete with numerous layers, massive ski boots, a cumbersome parka, and a heavy ski mask with goggles. That wouldn’t make any sense would it? A runner wants every competitive advantage he can get. And he will strip down to the bare minimum to get it.

Each of us have a little bit of that elite runner in us. We do the same thing when we step on the scale at home or at the doctor’s office. Trying to get every advantage we empty our pockets, remove our belt, take off our shoes, and strip off every layer of clothing we can.

That is the point the writer of Hebrews is making. In order to run our race well, we need to strip it down. It is imperative we let go of the heaviness that bogs us down, trips us up, and impedes our progress.

Early into this new year I encourage you to take an inventory. Take a break from this race we call life and meditate on the things that are keeping you from running at your best. Perhaps it’s the weightiness of a past you need to leave behind? Maybe a hurt you have refused to let go of? Or a habit that needs to be dropped? By chance it’s a schedule that needs to be paired down? Or a relationship that has turned toxic? Take time to inventory what’s holding you back and strip it down.

Ryan Smallwood