G’day mate! Welcome to you! This post is part of a series I’m working my way through in the month of October, called Swim Your Own Race. If you’d like to start at the beginning (it is a very good place to start, after all) you can do so, right here. You can also find a link to all the posts in this series on Day One. I hope you enjoy diving in!


Just a few weeks ago we piled into our minivan to head west. Not too far west, just quite close to Charlotte. The Hubs was second shooting a wedding, and I was very excited that the close proximity of the wedding was an excuse to go and visit one of my bestest friends in da whole wide world.

We hadn’t seen each other in real life for ages, but we’d been in touch often, just texting or calling or interacting on Facebook. I hadn’t seen my friends’ sweet little daughter, Sophie, since she was like nine weeks old, and now she was well over a year old, and, as babies do, she had changed so much since I saw her last.

But, thanks to Facebook, when I saw her, I wasn’t surprised in the slightest. I might’ve even said aloud, “I feel like I know her already!!” I’d looked at pictures of her very often since our last visit, so she looked exactly how I expected her to look. Sophie’s bright eyes, her sweet round face and even the cute little pigtail atop her head were all very familiar. I felt like I’d known her all along.

But as the weekend progressed, I truly got to know my friend’s little girl. I watched her and saw what a peaceful and content baby she was. She always seemed very thoughtful, always observing, always learning. She rarely fussed and seemed like such a patient and wise soul, inside this tiny little body. Watching her unique and precious ways, studying and learning her, made me realize I didn’t really know her at all.

Sure I’d seen pictures and watched her grow up month by month for quite some time, but those were just pictures. She was a real baby with a real personality I hadn’t seen before.

Sometimes it’s easy to think we know something, but maybe we don’t really know.


Yesterday, we dug into a conversation about Jesus’ last words. What’s recorded in each of the Gospels is slightly different, one from another, but they all bring forward the same basic themes, recounting different sections of all the things that probably happened in those final moments when Jesus was with His disciples before He left the Earth.

One particular instruction that Jesus gave His disciples was very clearly spelled out, quite similarly, in both Matthew and Mark’s Gospels.

Matthew’s version is often called “The Great Commission”and it reads:

“All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” {Matt. 28:18-20}

Mark’s version, also called “The Great Commission” reads:

“Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” {Mark 16:15-18}

Now in both of these accounts, one specific theme emerges. And that theme can be perhaps be summarized Go out there, tell about Me.

Luke’s account said first hang on, and receive the Holy Spirit, (and we covered that conversation yesterday) and these two pick up after that instruction, in agreement with what was recorded in Luke, You are my witnesses.

In each of these different accounts of Jesus’ Famous Last Words, we are clearly instructed that we are to be witnesses. In a courtroom, we know the witness is the one who testifies about their personal experience.

Now let me ask you a question. Do you feel like you know Jesus the way I knew Sophie before our visit? Do you feel like you just kind of have an idea of what He’s probably like based on pictures you’ve seen, stories you’ve heard, and so on?

Or do you feel like you’ve seen Jesus in action? In your own life, in prayer, while worshiping, and in the ways you’ve seen the hand of God move over the course of your lifetime, have you seen enough to be a witness?

Before I went on that little trip west, I thought I could tell you all about Sophie. The blonde hair, the pigtail, the bright blue eyes, and the round face with the lovely complexion.

But once I was in her presence, I really started to get to know her. She was different from what I expected. I had no idea she’d be such a calm, and peaceful and observant creature. I loved being around her.

If we are called to be witnesses to Jesus, we have to be in His presence. In. Real. Life. We can’t base what we know on what other people have experienced. In a court of law, that would be perjury. We’re to testify to what we’ve seen and heard and experienced ourselves, as we’ve formed our own relationship with Jesus.

Are you swimming your race with Jesus as a distant ideal you’re aspiring toward? Or is He right there with you in the water, through the Holy Spirit, coaching you stroke by stroke when you’re willing to listen?

Do you have a deep and abiding sense in your heart that He already swam the perfect race for you, that you are already accepted by God, and that the swim of your life is a privileged opportunity for you to walk with God and glorify Him?

Jesus closed out His time on earth with a commissioning — He gave us the mission to be His witnesses throughout the world. As we dive more deeply into close and abiding interactions with Him, through reading His word and studying His ways, and praying and stopping to listen for His still small voice, our witness for Him will be more and more effective.

Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t feel like you can say Yes! I deep and overwhelmingly know Him! Just know that He deeply and overwhelmingly wants you to. He wants to reveal more of Himself to you, and wants you to know how deep and abiding His love for you truly is.


To change the world for Christ, we’ll have to transition from having an idea of what He’s like to truly knowing Him.

Be still and know today, friends. You are loved deeply by an incredible Savior, and there is so much more to know.