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I used to love to ride my bike when I was a kid. It was something I would do nearly everyday. My favorite thing to do — find the biggest hills my neighborhood and race down them with my friends. The only catch was that at a certain point we would stop pedaling and just coast. Man, we would fly. We would go faster and faster until we reached our top speed at the bottom of the hill. We’d maintain momentum going up the hill from which we just came down, but we could never, as hard as we tried, coast all the way to the top. There would always come a point at which we would have to pedal and push forward to make it up the hill. Either that or we’d turn around and roll back down the hill only to come to an eventual stop at the lowest point.

Too many Christians are coasting. They’re not pedaling, pushing ahead with intentionality. Instead, they’re content with letting yesterday’s successes sustain today’s movement. Coasting in nothing more than mediocrity covered with the guise of forward motion.

And that’s a problem. The verbs in the Bible are not passive. They require action. Press. Go. Change. Work. Serve. Run. You can’t do those things and be coasting at the same time. Coasting requires no work. The work that God calls us to do requires work. Constant work. Continual work. Not coasting. You can’t do anything great for God by resting on the energy of yesterday.

The problem with coasting is this: You can coast for awhile. You can get comfortable coasting because you may pick up speed and gain momentum, and you think you’re good. You think you’re doing something. But in reality, you haven’t done anything in a long time. Then, when an uphill comes along, when a trial comes, when you’re confronted with a test, your coasting, your built up momentum will only take you so far. Eventually you’ll stop. And then you start to roll backwards, just as me and my bike would.

How do you know if you’re coasting? Chances are, if you have to ask, then you are. But how do we stop coasting? Start pedaling!

[For more from Stuart McDonald, check out his personal blog and follow him on Twitter]

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