Never Quit

American-Pharoah-ketucky-derby-earplugsI hope you got to see the most exciting two minutes in sports — of course I’m talking about the 2015 Run for the Roses.  This year’s edition of the Kentucky Derby was an incredible two minute and three second life-lesson on the art of coming from behind to win the really big one. In the end it was a three horse race with American Pharaoh pulling ahead just before the finish line. The never quitting three year old ended up electrifying the record Churchill Downs crowd, and millions more of us less fortunate ones watching on TV winning by a length over leader Firing Line. Chalk up another parable of life from the world of sports.

After over twenty – five years of ministry, I can think of countless folks whom I have personally known who have made just as remarkable comebacks. Here are a few and believe me this is just the tip of a pretty incredible iceberg. There are Mike and Judy who were teetering on the precipice of divorce after years of addiction and a troubled marriage. Instead of quitting, they started going to church; they kept running by putting their faith in God even when it looked hopeless.  Today their marriage is strong, they both smile a lot and I’m honored to have them as friends.

My brother, Eddie, who was diagnosed with stage three lung cancer, decided to keep running too. In the process, as he put it, he “found the Man upstairs” and God gave him another seven years, perhaps his best seven.

I think of my old friend Bob.  He had never been into the church scene, but like so many he went through the yearly ritual of attending an Easter service. Unlike most, for some reason he came back the next Sunday and then the next and then every Sunday. Bob has now crossed his final finish line in great shape. He hung in for the long haul even when he was way back in the pack.

The truth is right now you may feel like you are so far out of the running of life that there is no hope for you. Take a lesson from American Pharaoh. Here’s how he did it. It wasn’t all that complicated. He kept putting one foot in front of the other.  He kept doing the next right thing. That was the secret to winning the race.  Take my word for it; the guy who appears to be winning is still in a vulnerable position even though he may be way out in front. If you keep running, just like the folks I mentioned and millions more, you stand an excellent chance of not only overtaking him but leaving him in a cloud of dust no matter who or what “him” may be in your life.

Something to think about

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