This past Saturday, I led my first one day retreat at the Servant Leadership School in Washington, D.C. I am indebted to the group for the invitation and the opportunity to put this truth into action. “Leading the Race-less Life” sought to provide an opportunity to put race and its behaviors under the scrutiny of sacred Scripture, to challenge our human condition according to race and in so doing, to further move ourselves into our position with Jesus Christ. Armed with books, well- planned questions and seemingly endless handouts, I entered the Festival Center ready to deliver the good news of the race-less life. The members of spiritual support group number four were eager to here my approach to race and Christ’s calling for the race-less life. They asked me questions before the presentation, over lunch and as I packed up my materials to return home. The Desert Fathers described the spiritual retreat as “wasting time with God” and I felt my time was well- wasted.
While preparing for this retreat, I found this nugget hidden between the covers of an old and tattered book on leading a spiritual retreat. I pray that the words of Martin Luther encourage you as they have me to run this race with patience, knowing that we are on the right road:
“This life, therefore, is not righteousness but growth in righteousness, not health but healing, not being but becoming, not rest but exercise. We are not yet what we shall be but we are growing toward it, the process is not finished but it is going on, this is not the end but it is the road. All does not yet gleam in glory but all is being purified.”
Fellow trackmates, the race-less life is only a beginning of many more to come. It is one of many growth spurts as there is much more of Christ’s being that we are to come into. Be encouraged as you run today, knowing that there is healing and freedom in each step that you take away from race and toward Jesus Christ. And to be sure, we are not running from race but to Jesus Christ. Keep your eyes on “the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12.2). Don’t lose focus.