RUN YOUR OWN RACE
I have a niece who is a super athlete. Whenever I went with them for athletic meets where her club was competing with other clubs, I sometimes heard her coach and her mum celebrate her personal best even if she did not win the race and if her club did not win the competition.
There is a natural tendency in humans to be competitive. And that is not a bad thing in itself. There is the competition that is healthy and that pushes us to be more innovative and encourages us to be the best at whatever we are doing. Celebrating one’s personal best can only encourage one to do better. On the other hand if one is admonished for not winning a race regardless of them making a personal best that can begin to foster negativity on the playing field. Everybody loves to win; after all nobody wants to be tagged a loser. But there could be an obsession to win at all costs and that will push one to do just about anything. That! is unhealthy.
Have you ever watched an athletics competition where the athlete in the lead kept looking back until they either tripped and fell or others caught up with them? The finish line should be the focus. But rather than look towards the finish line, they kept looking back. Let us stop looking back over our shoulders. Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ said as much when He was on earth. Peter, one of the disciples was asking Jesus about another disciple John. Hear what Jesus said “Jesus said to Peter ” If I want him to live until I come again, how does that concern you? Follow me!” John 21:22 GOD’S WORD Translation
What Jesus is saying in effect is that what He does with anyone is not the concern of everyone and that He can choose to do whatsoever with whomsoever. Everyone is called to a different race. “And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.” Hebrews 12:1b NLT We cannot all do the 100 meters dash! Some will do the marathon. Others are made with the endurance and much needed stamina for the decathlon. Some will get married early, some will get married late and some will never get married. Some will send their children to Ivy league schools and some will not. Some will be excellent chefs but lousy accountants. Some will be great doctors but cannot cook to save their lives. Some are excellent entertainers and some are amazing designers. In the category of designers some are making waves at children’s clothing but cannot confidently put together a ball gown. Bringing it closer home, Usain Bolt was an outstanding athlete and when he left the tracks he began nurturing a career in football. But he had to give up the dream eventually. It was not his calling. We must stop worrying about what others are doing or what they are wearing or driving or even how they are travelling. It is simply not our business. We must stop killing ourselves over images we see on social media. Some of them are well doctored to have the effect of making others go green with envy. And quite frankly, it does not concern us. See, God has a unique agenda for each and every one. No two people are exactly alike. It is important therefore to face our own assignment and do it well. Let us work to excel at what we are called to do. And stop spending time trying to outdo our siblings, our friends, our colleagues and our neighbours. If we keep looking at the neighbour’s grass which we perceive to be greener, what good would that do us? We should put our time and energy to grooming our own lawn.
Many have faced hurdles and crossed them. And what some are trying to achieve overnight is what took patience, perseverance and hard work, (physically and spiritually) to achieve. Let us then do this: “Make it your aim to live a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to earn your own living, just as we told you before.” 1 Thessalonians 4:11 Good News Translation
We really should learn to mind our own businesses literally and stop trying to be in the know of what anybody else is doing or what is happening to them. The bottom line is that it does not concern us.
Let us all be on our marks, get set and go.
Run our own race and STOP looking back at what others are doing.
OLUYINKA EGO-MARTINS ©