All-Together Race (Marathon)

Medal Rounds: August 12-13 (10,000m); August 14, 21 (Marathon)

Get Out and Play!

Gather:
running shoes

Go:
1. Find a school track or other safe place to run.
2. Everyone lines up together and runs 1 mile.
3. If any runner gets too far ahead, the other runners count to 5 out loud. The lead runner then has to turn around and walk or jog backward until another runner catches up.

A Champion’s Heart

Truthful lips endure forever, but a lying tongue, only a moment. —Proverbs 12:19

The final event of the Summer Games, the marathon stretches 26.2 miles and takes hours to finish. While the Olympic runners will be under close scrutiny, with cameras and chip-timers tracking every step, that wasn’t always the case at big races around the world.

In 1980, a woman crossed the finish line of the Boston Marathon in record time. She hadn’t even broken a sweat. Only one problem—she didn’t run the full race. She allegedly ran less than one mile of the 26 she was supposed to. It was a huge scandal, but it was hardly unique. In 2009, 252 runners were disqualified at the Chicago Marathon. Athletes have tried taking shortcuts across the course, “starting” near the finish line and even sneaking onto the subway.

Sometimes it feels like nobody will notice if you cheat to get ahead. But God notices. He sees what’s in your heart, and He wants you to live like others can see it too. It’s called integrity: having the courage to be honest and play fair, even if it means others finish ahead of you.

Cheaters might come in first, but the truth always wins.

Are there any “races” in your life that feel like a marathon? What helps you decide to keep following the rules?

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Copyright © 2016 by Focus on the Family. Photo © Andre Zehetbauer/Flickr.com; used under Creative Commons License.