The spring semester is off to a running start, and Monday morning chapels and Monday evening discipleship groups are already digging into the new theme: Run the Race. BJU President Dr. Steve Pettit picked the theme based on Hebrews 12, which visualizes the Christian life as a race.

“The major point of the race is that you have to endure and be patient,” Pettit said.

Julie Vanderberg, a junior premed major,   said she’s excited about this study. “This theme is so applicable to me right now, not only in my walk with God, but also in my schooling,” Vanderberg said. “Second semester junior year calls for a lot of endurance!”

The series will consist of about 10 messages that will cover the Christian race and other related topics, such as faithfulness, discipline and personal revival. Pettit hopes to end the series with a study on heaven, as that is the end of the Christian race.

Pettit refined the theme Run the Race from material he wrote during his time as camp director of Northland Camp and Conference Center. Last semester’s theme, Walking in the Spirit, also came from this material, and future themes will most likely be from this collection as well.

Pettit has instituted themed messages to encourage students to be attentive in chapel. “This is [a reason] they can be excited about coming to chapel and have a spirit of anticipation,” Pettit said.

Students will also be able to soak up this semester’s theme through discussion with their discipleship groups, aided by the Running the Race books provided for all students.

President Pettit said he hopes the students will listen with an open heart, embrace what is taught, and be ready to apply what they learn, not only during their time as students, but also throughout the rest of their lives.