In some places, we are on a journey. In some, we are on a walk. In other sections, we are “building a temple,” while in others we are the “household of faith.” The metaphor that I like is “running a race.” The Apostle Paul exhorts us to run the race, “so that we obtain the prize” (1 Cor. 9). The writer to the Hebrews tells us “to run the race set before us with endurance” (Hebrews 12). At the end of his ministry, Paul tells Timothy that he “finished the race” (2 Tim. 4). This metaphor can easily draw us in because we all know what “running a race” means. For some of us, running a race is the “rat race” of life. Some of us are runners, and we like to display our 13.1 or 26.2 stickers. My favorite sticker shows the number 27.4 with the caption ‘I got lost’ underneath.
For the church, we are in a race as well. Our race is not a solo event, where I get to boast about what I personally accomplished (i.e. 26.2 miles). We are running a race of faith that began with the call of God on a people (Genesis 12) and our race doesn’t finish until the New Heavens and New Earth are established (Rev. 21). You could say that ours is one giant “relay race” of redeemed humanity. Every generation passing a baton. Every kind of person running the race. Every tribe, tongue, and nation are participating. What a glorious image.
Each race has some measurable increment. We measure by a year. We look, consider, and pray by a year, but we are always thinking ahead of our next increments. I love the quote that “we overestimate what we can accomplish in one year and we underestimate what we can see happen in five years”. And as we run, we want to run in such a way as to not be disqualified but to finish well.
This year has been a year of great generosity from many of you and beyond. We have run the race well. We’re praying for the final “leg” of resources to finish this year strong. We are asking your help to conclude this fi scal year with an additional $120,000 (we have received 78% of our needs for mission and ministry thus far). If you have never given to the ministry of this Province, would you prayerfully consider joining. Every bit helps. Simply put, $120,000 is $100 from 1200 new people and families. Consider being one of those new 1,200 people. Consider your part in this great race of faith.
We are so grateful for your partnership in this ministry and church.
The Rev. Canon Alan J. Hawkins
Canon for Development