Psalms 119:32 (AMP) I will run the way of Your commandments [with purpose], for You will give me a heart that is willing.

Last week I spent time with my mother at Panama City Beach, Florida. The beaches in the Gulf of Mexico have white sand. They have some of my favorite beaches. Gulf Shores, Alabama, being my top favorite. Panama City is where my mother, and sometimes my grandmother, would take us during the summers. The places we stayed growing up had an old Panama City feel, and the place we stayed at this time reminded me of my childhood. My grandmother would have celebrated her 80th birthday that week.

hile on the beach, where I spent most of the day, I read. I love the written word. I do not read fiction. I read books by authors like John Bevere, Lisa Bevere, Tommy Tinney, Joanne Weaver, Lysa Terkeurst, Joyce Meyer, Lisa Harper, Bob Goff….I have an extensive library. I not only read the revelation of others, but I also read the Bible for myself. Right now I am reading the Bible chronologically and I am about a third of the way through (I started about 120 days ago).

This verse above stood out to me. Sometimes we think that God will run the race for us. Have you ever heard this statement: “It’s a marathon, not a race”? When someone sets out to do a marathon, they have to train. When someone starts running, they cannot expect themselves to do a 5K the first day out. When we start to desire more of the things of God, we cannot expect to sit and pray for two hours, when we have never prayed more than at meal time (the same with reading).

How can I want to do this, you ask? Make a plan and execute it. This verse says do it with a purpose. If it is something we think we are “suppose” to do and don’t, then guilt will set it. Guilt is the biggest lie of the enemy when it comes to getting into a deeper relationship with our Father. It will cause us to run away from Him instead of drawing closer to Him.

So pick up that book study that has been calling you to grow deeper. Spend some intentional time in prayer. Turn off the television, You Tube or whatever you like to listen to to get your Word for the day and start reading it for yourself (good teaching should be a supplement to add to, not your be all). You might start out with a chapter a day…I did. The first time I read the Bible completely through was when I was forty (twenty two years after I received Jesus as my Lord and Savior). That was last year.

We are all at different levels of training for the marathon. Do not get distracted or feel guilty for not running as fast as others. Just keep running, He is the wind that is pushing you along. He will give you the heart that is willing!

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