Believers in Jesus Christ are in a race. Our race is not a foot race for sprinters like the great sprinter, Michael Johnson. Neither is it NASCAR for heavy-footed drivers like Dale Earnhardt Jr. It is a race for a far greater cause and a far greater prize, a prize that will last forever. The training for this race is mental and spiritual. Our coach has left us an instruction manual (the Bible.) The Holy Spirit of God and that great cloud of witnesses are our cheering fans. The finish line is either death or the rapture of the church. We will be rewarded for running this race by our heavenly Father, but we will not get a trophy and put it on display in a glass case. We will place our trophies (the crowns we have won) at the feet of the Savior because without him we can do nothing.
1Co 9:24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.
1Co 9:25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
Heb 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Heb 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Rev 4:10 The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying,
Rev 4:11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.