Monday, March 16, 2015

Centered on Christ

"Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:13-14

“I just keep looking forward. It’s kind of difficult to look back on the way everything has gone, So I really don’t focus too much on the bad things and the low points as much. I just really look forward to all of the positives in the future. That’s where my mindset is.” Legally blind runner, Chaz Davis, is a Junior at the University of Hartford who just set a PR at the America East Track and Field Championships on February 21. This was just the confirmation he needed that he could compete at the Division I level again.

Just a few years earlier, as a high school runner, Davis won individual state titles for Grafton High School in Massachusetts. His freshman year at the University of Hartford started off well. He had a strong cross country season and was the only freshman in Hartford’s top five at the NCAA regional meet. And then, it happened. His eyesight rapidly began to deteriorate and he was diagnosed with LHON (Leber's Hereditary Optic Neuropathy). By the end of his freshman year, his eyesight was almost completely gone, along with his dreams of ever competing again. And then his father suggested that he try running on an indoor track instead of cross country-it seems he has enough eyesight to see the contrast between the track and the white lines that mark the lanes making it safe for him to navigate.  After many months of training, and with the help of some friends and coaches, he made his comeback to competitive running in a meet in early December. He said he wasn't blown away by his time, but once again looking forward to what he can do, he said it gave him the confidence he needed to keep training and is now focusing on improving his times. Because of his limited eyesight, he has to keep his eyes focused on what is ahead. There's no other way to run the race.

Had Chaz Davis spent his time being depressed and angry at God, he would have missed the blessing that was before him. Instead, he chose to focus on the things God had given him rather than what had been taken away. Where's your mindset? Are you looking forward to what God wants to bless you with? Make "Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, " your new goal and live the life God intended for you... a life of purpose.

Heavenly Father, thank You for the blessings in the middle of our struggles and trials. Lord, I pray that we would always keep our eyes centered on You. Help us to forget the past and press on toward the goal of a life spent serving and glorifying You. Give us the strength, knowledge and perseverance to run with endurance and to finish the race as a good and faithful servant. It's in your precious name we pray Jesus, Amen. 

Happy Running!!!

Press on - Mandisa