Sometimes on my morning run I’m tempted to take a shortcut home. The problem however with that idea is that I know that if I take a short cut today I’ll be even more tempted to do so again tomorrow. All those shortcuts will eventually just mess up my exercise routine and ultimately affect my overall health and well-being.
Shortcuts may make us feel relieved initially, but the desired results will be less than they should be and our emotions and undisciplined thoughts will begin to dictate to us, rather than us responding to what God is wanting to do in our lives.
Shortcuts are not just about being lazy about our exercise, but also about our character and personal growth. Take for instance today where I am celebrating finishing an intensive 18 months of sexual assault counselling. Every week I’ve pushed myself to go to my appointment even when it was the last thing I wanted to do. I’ve completed 7 gruelling weeks of group sessions, months and months of one on one counselling, confronted fears, anxiety, and letting go. All this while I experienced flashbacks and recalled memories I have pushed down for decades. There were no shortcuts to getting to where I am today – it was confronting, painful and plain hard work some days.
However today I am so glad I didn’t quit or take shortcuts. I’m really proud of myself today, because I chose everyday to keep trusting God. I’ve had to choose to talk it out, to remember, listen and let go as I leaned into Jesus and faced my past and fears. Today I feel and know that I am different and that a new chapter has opened up in my life. I bypassed any shortcuts and ran the race to win my prize which for me is freedom, confidence and knowing that I’m actually quite spectacular 🙂
I want to encourage you next time you are tempted to take a shortcut, to stop and assess the wisdom in that decision. Whether it is the best way rather than the shortest route, and if it will lead you to your best life? Better to do things God’s way, run your race well and receive the prize.
“Don’t you realise that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! ” (1 Corinthians 9:24)
Jesus said, “Don’t look for shortcuts to God. The market is flooded with sure-fire, easy-going formulas for a successful life that can be practiced in your spare time. Don’t fall for that stuff, even though crowds of people do. The way to life – to God! – is vigorous and requires total attention. (Matthew 7:13 The Message)
Prayer: I’m choosing to run my race well toda and to not take shortcuts. Lord please help me to have wisdom as I travel through my day, and to recognise where I might be being tempted to make hasty decisions, or to retreat or cut corners in my life. Instead I want to choose the best way and I ask for your strength to do that today. In Jesus name Amen.