I've had the privilege and pain of running a few marathons. For the average runner, like me, the key to finishing such a challenging race is endurance. Sure, the thrill of the event and the experience of being surrounded by a "cloud of witnesses" and other runners is a great help. However, the raw, deep, "rubber-on-the-road" reality is this: at some point, it all comes down to the inward resolve to be stronger than the pain you're facing.
Endurance: The strength, patience and resolve to conquer stress or difficulty. (WordBook)
Endurance is not a spotlight on a difficult situation. It is the awareness and cooperation of an inward strength that is greater than what you're facing. In the life of a child of God, this Force within you is the Spirit of God Himself. He is greater than all that is in this world! As you continue on in your race, always draw your strength from His promised presence. As I'm sure you've heard it said, "I'm not saying it's going to be easy. I'm saying that it's going to be worth it!" (Art Williams)