When was your last Dance Party?


I am celebrating big time right now. This past weekend I crossed the finish line to a race I have been running for 6 years. Yes, 6 years!

My race took me away from home and family on many weekends and evenings. It had me driving up and down the freeway between Salem and Portland every week. It had me sucking down endless cups of Starbucks coffee and using endless hours of free Wi-Fi.

Like a song stuck on repeat, my friends and family members heard me talk about my race, over and over, and over again.

Well, they don’t have to hear me talk about it anymore. This past weekend, I crossed the finish line and finished my race. It was the race of getting my master’s degree at George Fox Seminary.

I am celebrating and so is my entire family.

My nine-year old daughter jubilantly said,

“Yay, daddy can do dance parties again!”

Despite today’s celebration, there were many moments during my 6-year journey that I didn’t feel like celebrating at all.

I often felt like I was chasing the pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. My seminary finish line seemed to move farther away from me with every step I took.

In fact, the finish line moved often enough that I managed to pack a 3-year degree into 6 years.

Can you relate? Is there an important race you are running right now?

Maybe you are running the race of getting out of debt, or buying your first house. Maybe you’re waiting on an adoption, or battling a health issue, or working through a difficult relationship.

Do you need some encouragement in your race?

Hebrews 12:1 says, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.”

Whatever race you are running right now, it is an important one. If you are experiencing fatigue, or resistance then this race might be the most important one of your life.

In these toughest moments, please remember that God set this race before you and God will carry you through to the finish.

My friend Bob Goff is fond of saying, “All of Heaven is leaning over the rails, and cheering you on!”

Bob Goff and Family

Who else is cheering you on? Do you have a team of friends and family members praying for you?

I don’t think I could have finished my seminary race without friends and family cheering me on, giving me grace, and echoing “You got this!”

Whatever race you are running, whatever mile marker you are at, I want you to know, “You got this!”

Take a moment right now and imagine what it will be like to cross the finish line of your race. Imagine who you want to celebrate with as you cross the finish line. Imagine what kind of party you want to throw.

I just accepted an opportunity to teach freshman at Trevecca Nazarene University and help students discover who God made them to be, and how they can use that for the greatest impact in this world.

I had no idea this opportunity would be waiting for me on the other side of the finish line. I don’t know what is waiting for you, and chances are that you don’t know either.

All I know, is, it’s probably better than you know so keep going.

Mark and Katie

“You got this!”

1-Please respond in the comments with one word that describes the race you are running right now. I will be committed to pray over every response I get.

2-Do you have a team of friends and family cheering you on? Talk to your spouse, significant other, or friends and enlist a team.

3-Stop what you are doing and write down what you want to do when you cross the finish line? What kind of party will you throw? Who will be there?

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