December 21, 2012

“Do you not know that in a race all the runners compete but only one receives the prize?  So run that you may obtain it.”
1 Cor. 9:24

I competed in my first triathlon back in August.  My goal was to finish in the top fifty of my age class. I finished 51st and was a little bummed. However, I was slight over 50% of the whole field so I was safely in the bell curve of the competition and, most importantly, I didn’t embarrass myself.

I have never won a “real” race.  I have never even placed in a real race. I don’t pursue the unrealistic goal of actually winning.  My primary goal is to simply not embarrass myself.  I don’t want to be that guy who pukes or soils himself. If I can finish in the meat of the bell curve, then I will be happy.


I have never been the smartest person in a “real” class. I have always been the victim of the exceptional; those who would skew the class grading curve in a direction that I never found favorable.  I was not valedictorian at my University, High School, Middle School, or Kindergarten, for that matter. My primary academic goal has been to pass the class and not embarrass myself.

I have never been artistic. I am amazed by those who can create art. I am in awe of those who can move me to tears with music; who can paint vivid images with a palette of words; who can convey profound meaning in images.  My attempts at “art” are shared within a very limited circle because I simply don’t want to embarrass myself.

I continually ask people if what I am communicating “makes sense” to them because I have learned that everything that makes perfect sense within my mind does not always get communicated in a way that makes sense to anyone else and that is embarrassing.

I am the meat of the bell curve and so are about 68% of you all.  We are the meat of average. We are the ones that have not won the prizes, ribbons, scholarships, commendations, or honors.

Therefore, it might seem daunting  for the majority of us, who are so familiar with being the meat, when the Bible talks about competing for a prize.  It is particularly daunting when the consequences of that race is eternal life.

That is until we realize that our race is not an individual race. Our race is a team competition and our partner has already secured the victory.  We have already won.  There is no chance of being embarrassed. There is no chance of failure. We just need to endure to the end and finish.  We just have to get across the line and the victory is ours.

All the accolades will be for the one who actually earned the victory, as it should be.  My inability to secure the prize on my own just amplifies his gloriousness.

PRAYER: Father – Thank you for securing the victory through your Son.  Thank you for showing me that it is a race that I could never finish on my own.  Thank you for giving me what I have not earned or deserve.  Lord, I praise your holy name for you are worthy of all praise.    Amen


  1. […] cyclists.  My brain tells me that I will probably finish where I normally do, right in the meat of average, but I will never know until I […]

  2. […] usual, I was right in the meat of the race bell curve; The Meat of Average.  I did not swim with the race leaders.  I was jostled about with swimmers all around me […]

  3. well written – thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks for the encouragement.
      Merry Christmas!

  4. Thanks brother, for the reminder that victory for the race was already won by Him who loved and gave Himself for us. Yet I still know we are urged to run and press toward the mark of the prize of the high calling in Christ Jesus.(Phil 3:20). Really love your thoughts. God Bless.

    • Amen! No coasting to the finish line. I am glad these words can be used by the Lord to encourage you.
      God Bless and Merry Christmas!

  5. Wonderful message thanks God bless

    • I am glad that is was encouraging.
      Merry Christmas!

  6. That was compelling!

    • I am glad it made sense. Thanks for the encouragement.
      Merry Christmas!

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