Here’s an excerpt from a sermon Edward Payson preached for New Year’s a couple centuries ago. It’s pretty challenging.
“Too long have I run in the race with men of this world, who have their portion in this life.
Too long have I been a competitor for the worthless prize which they are pursuing. But I will be so no longer.
I forsake the race, I stand aside, and say, Let others pursue and obtain, if they can, the pleasures, the applause, the possessions, which this world offers … I resign them all.
I have another race to run, I have nobler objects to pursue; and to this race, to these objects, to the service of my Savior, and to the pleasures, the honors, the possessions of eternity, I now, in the presence of God, consecrate my future life and all my powers.”
Read the entire sermon here.
~Edward Payson, 1783-1827
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”