Grace is defined as “the free and unmerited favour of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings. It is also a divinely given talent or blessing; a virtue coming from God”. For this message, I will take grace as a special talent, virtue, or blessing from God to excel in something or in certain things.
Race can be defined as competition between runners, horses, vehicle, etc to see which is the fastest in covering a set course; a contest of speed; the course of life; a contest of rivalry involving progress towards a goal. For this message, I will take race as the course of life, and a contest of rivalry involving progress towards a goal.
In essence, grace for the race ahead for this message will mean having the special power, talent, virtue or blessing from God to excel in the course of our life; or in the contest of rivalry that involves us progressing towards our goal.
In a regular race or in any competition, those who are runners or competing know that to excel in such competition; one will need to have mastered their game properly; and a doze of luck is also needed on the day of the event.
For example, those competing in100m dash, apart from their season’s best record (on the day of competition, their reflex must just be right: must get up in time, must not be too quick, muscles must be fine, etc. i.e. luck must shine on them).
For us as God’s children, for the race course of our lives and for the contest of rivalry involving progress towards any goal we have set, apart from been able to demonstrate the mastery of our game in knowledge, skill and diligence, we will also need grace in order to excel.
Sometimes, it is difficult to calculate exactly how life may play out. One might have mastered their skill very well and also have worked very hard; the results however can still be uncertain or unpleasant, as there are other things that can still be beyond our control, that is why grace is paramount.
Prayer: Father, crown every of my effort in life with grace and favour in Jesus name.
In Ps. 20: 7, King David prayed to God and said,
Some nations boast of their chariots and horses, but we boast in the name of the LORD our God.
During the time of David, nations that have calvary armies (on horses and chariots) are stronger than those that only have infantry armies. The calvary army has an added advantage over those on foot (height, speed, psychological shock, comparative hugeness). However, it is possible for a calvary army to still lose in a contest against an infantry army. E.g. Gideon led 300 men on foot against host of Midian and won.
Ps. 33: 17 Don’t count on your warhorse to give you victory — for all its strength, it cannot save you.
Prov. 21:31 Even if your army has horses ready for battle, the LORD will always win. (ContempEV).
That is why the writer of Eccl. tells us in chapter 9:11 that, “I have observed something else under the sun. The fastest runner doesn’t always win the race, and the strongest warrior doesn’t always win the battle. The wise sometimes go hungry, and the skillful are not necessarily wealthy. And those who are educated don’t always lead successful lives. It is all decided by chance, by being in the right place at the right time”. NLT
I pray for you that you will be favoured by time and chance in Jesus name.
May you enjoy the grace to be at the right place at the right time in Jesus name.
Heb. 12: 1 makes us to know that we are all in a race.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses [who by faith have testified to the truth of God’s absolute faithfulness], stripping off every unnecessary weight and the sin which so easily and cleverly entangles us, let us run with endurance and active persistence the race that is set before us.
Father, do not let any unnecessary weight pull me down or back in my race in Jesus name.
Father, do not allow me to fall into any error that can slow me down in my race.
Father, grant me the endurance and the patience to run the race that is set before me.
In I Kings 18: 41-46, at the end of 31/2 years of famine in Israel and the acknowledge of the people that the Lord is God, Elijah asked King Ahab to go and eat and drink; as he has had the sound of abundance of rain coming. As Ahab went to dine, Elijah however went up to Mount Carmel to pray for the rain to fall. After seven prayers sessions, Elijah’s servant said he could see a cloud as small as a man’s hand coming up from the sea.
So, Elijah sent message to Ahab to get on his chariot and start running to Jezreel so that the rain would not stop him. The rain began to fall heavily as Ahab rode along to Jezreel; the hand of God was however upon Elijah, so that he girded up his loins and outran Ahab to the entrance of the city of Jezreel.
I Kings 18: 45-46 AM P
In a little while the sky grew dark with clouds and wind, and there were heavy showers. And Ahab mounted and rode [his chariot] and went [inland] to Jezreel. Then the hand of the Lord came upon Elijah [giving him supernatural strength]. He girded up his loins and outran Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel [nearly twenty miles].
May the hands of the Lord God come upon you.
May God grant you supernatural strength.
For every mile of journey ahead of you, may God enable you Himself.
May God take care of every obstacle ahead of you.
There is someone listening to me now, you are in a contest or competition with what is seemingly stronger than you, you will outrun that thing in Jesus name. (King Ahab should be younger; was on chariot and started off first….).
The sort of things that people of your status and calibre cannot do; may God grant you the supernatural grace to do them in Jesus name.
The sky might be dark with clouds and wind, heavy showers might also be falling; you will however not be stranded, you will arrive your destination safely in Jesus name. You will arrive at your destination triumphantly.
Jezreel means ‘God sows’ or ‘God scatters’, scatter as in scattering seeds. The grace to reach your Divine plantation and Rehoboth, may Jehovah bestow upon you in Jesus name.
Prayer: Father, let Your grace see me through dark clouds, stormy winds, heavy showers and every other season victoriously in Jesus name.
In I Sam. 17: 1-54, the bible tells us that the Philistines and the Israelites were set against each other in battle. Instead of both armies to engage each other; Goliath, the champion of the Philistines asked that one soldier from each party should come out to represent their army. Goliath volunteered himself for the Philistines, so someone was needed to represent the Israelites, sadly no one came out.
It was a race for life; a race for survival as Goliath was not only a war champion; but he was also a 10 feet giant; and he was also dressed from head to feet in bronze, he left no room for where to attack. Goliath was so fearful and intimidating to the extent that no one from Israel camp could engaged him in that rivalry contest for 40 days! He would curse them, curse their God; that was not still enough to provoke the Israelites to enter the race.
God had to arrange for David to appear at the battlefront after 40 days. He was only a 17-year-old lad; never fought in military battle before; and not even a regular soldier. He had no protective armour; and no weapon of warfare (except a staff, a catapult and 5 stones). He was however granted special grace by God to confront Goliath in the race and he won!
There is someone listening to me now, you are currently in a race that borders on your life and survival; God will grant you the grace to win in Jesus name.
You are in a race that is very terrifying. You will not lose as the Lord lives.
There is a race that everyone is afraid of; God will grant you the supernatural powers to conquer it in Jesus name.
Your victory over a challenging contest will bring you fame and fortune.
You are up against an enemy that is mocking you, thinking that you are ill prepared; they will be shocked at their end.
You are in an important race; what you have at your disposal to fight seem insignificant and unrealistic. I have been asked to tell you by God that you should not underestimate your weapon. Use it in faith. The result you will have will be staggering.
I see all that are competing against you abandoning the race for you. I hereby declare you unopposed in Jesus name. The stage is now free for you. You will now operate unhindered. Move as you like.
Prayer: Father, remove any and every Goliath on my path of running in Jesus name.
In 2 Sam. 18: 19-33, after the death of Absalom, Ahimaaz the son of Zadok the priest wanted to bring the news to David; but Joab the Army objected, because it was to be a bad news for David, and I thought Joab did not want Ahimaaz to bear such news; as it can lead to grave consequence, as it happened to the bearer of King Saul’s death to David.
So, Joab asked an Ethiopian man to bear the sad news instead should in case David became angry. Ahimaaz however still pressed Joab to run after the Ethiopian man. So, Joab allowed him anyway, thinking that the Ethiopian man has left first and would deliver the news first before Ahimaaz would get there.
Interestingly, Ahimaaz took a route that cut off the Ethiopian man behind (the way of the plain of the Jordan River) and got to David first. When David asked him what happened at war, he said the war had gone in the king’s favour. But when David asked after Absalom, he said he was not sure, that he only saw a great turmoil going on when Joab sent him and the other person out on errand, but he did not know what exactly it was all about.
The Ethiopian came after that and confirmed that Absalom was dead. David did not kill him as Joab feared. He only started crying for his son
You are listening to me now, a race (a particular thing) has been speculated that it will be injurious to you, you will however run it well without any injury in Jesus name.
While your competitors are struggling on rugged and undulating surfaces to run; God will take you on plain, levelled and smooth surface in Jesus name.
The race ahead will not be harmful to you in Jesus name.
There is someone listening to me now, you have been chosen as a scape goat, as a sacrifice, to suffer for something that might go wrong, as the Ethiopian man was chosen by Joab. No harm will come to you in Jesus name.
Prayer: Father, level out every terrain before me as I run in Jesus name.
In Jos 1: 1-9, after the death of Moses, God told Joshua to continue the race with the people to Canaan, and also granted him the grace to get there victoriously.
God said the expanse of land between River Euphrates in the East and the Mediterranean Sea in the West shall be theirs.
That no man will be able to stand before Joshua all the days of his life.
That as He God was with Moses, so He would be with him and He will not abandon him.
Only that Joshua would need to be strong and be courageous. He must study, meditate, and obey God’s word; and by so doing, he will be prosperous and be successful.
He was assured of God presence wherever he would go. That was exactly what God did for him.
There is someone listening to me now, those who are mighty might have failed on the path you are running; but you will not fail in Jesus name. How are the mighty fallen shall not be your portion in Jesus name.
By the power and grace of God, you will cross over to your Canaan.
Every place the sole of your feet shall tread shall be yours in Jesus name. You will have a territory that you will not only occupy but you will also own.
Your running shall be fruitful. It will not end in vain.
There is someone listening now, God says you will not run your remaining race alone. He says He will run with you.
Can I encourage you today? Be strong and of a good courage x 2, God is with you.
God says, He will make you to cover much ground with less effort. Speed without sweat is granted to you now in Jesus name.
For all true disciples of Christ, Jesus promised supernatural grace for our Christian journey until we see Him in glory.
Mt. 28: 18-20
May the ultimate power and vivid presence of God will be evident in your race in Jesus name.
Mark 16: 15-20
As you continue your race in life as a believer, these promises of Christ shall follow you. You will cast out devils…
The sufficient grace for the race ahead of you shall be supplied to you by God in Jesus name.
Father, supply to me all necessary grace for every race ahead of me in Jesus name.
Sermon delivered on April 26, 2020.