“Your finish line is drawing near. . . . No matter how well you run this race, you will not run it forever. You’re going to need some help. Your strength expires at the finish line. The skill with which you have run? . . . The determination that carried you around the track? Your training? Experience and accomplishments? They matter not at all once you cross the finish line. You’re going to need someone to catch you. Jesus has promised to be that Someone.”- Max Lucado
“When he had received the drink, Jesus said, ‘It is finished.’ With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.”- John 19:30 (NIV)
In Chapter 9 (“Paid in Full”), of Never Alone, Max Lucado tells the story of runner Kayla Montgomery. One of the fastest long-distance runners in the nation, Kayla landed an athletic scholarship to Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee.
Diagnosed with multiple sclerosis at age fifteen, Kayla ran with no feeling in her legs. Because when Kayla overheats, her MS symptoms flare up. As a result, she’s numb from the waist down. So, after the first mile marker, she relied on momentum – autopilot – to keep moving. However, she crossed the finish line with no ability to decelerate.
Consequently, Kayla depended entirely on her coach to catch her. As a result, with her coach standing at the finish line, she ran right into his arms – at full speed. But Kayla never crashed because her coach was ever-present – his pledge to her.
Above all, Pastor Lucado asserts, the crucifixion qualifies as a miracle. Most significantly, on Calvary:
- through Christ’s atonement, sinners became saints
- Jesus healed all generations with an affirmation
In conclusion, Max adds:
“With a single proclamation [Jesus’] announcement on Calvary was sufficient to save all who believe in him from eternal death. The announcement? Tetelestai. ‘It is finished.’ (John 19:30 NIV). Remove your hat. Take off your shoes. Silence all clatter and lower your eyes. This is a holy word, a sacred moment.”
Today’s question: When you think about your finish line, how do you feel knowing that Jesus stands there, ready to catch you? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Dry up and stop flowing – God’s grace?”