Steve Prefontaine was supposed to be the greatest distance runner in American history. Had he not died at the tender age of 24, he probably would have been.
Pre, as he was called, liked to run out front, way ahead of the pack. He made a show of racing because he thought of running as art. His coaches begged him to run with strategy, to hold back and let others do the work. But Pre was famous for saying that he ran, not to win, but to see who had the most guts.
Because of that, he sometimes lost races he could have won.
The world says we should temper our love, look out for ourselves first, and be suspicious of our enemies. But Jesus says to turn the other cheek, give to those who ask, and pray for our enemies.
It wasn’t logical for Pre to run like he did. He would have been more successful had he not. But Pre said that when he ran he wanted people to stop and say, “I’ve never seen anyone run like that.”
Sometimes people ask me why Jesus had to die on a cross. It’s a good question. And there are probably a handful of good answers.
But one of them has to be that he wanted us to see him there and say, “I’ve never seen anyone love like that.”