Pastor Ed has pointed out that "to sin" in its original meaning is to miss the mark or fall short of the goal. If I have a Fitbit goal of 10,000 steps per day, am I sinning when I only walk 9,990 steps?
It matters who sets the mark. Our standards are not God's standards. Our goals are not God's goals. This is certainly true at the starting line.
It is an interesting sort of race, discipleship. We start with only our own vague notions of the length, direction, and finish line. We learn a little more about where we are going as we run. More importantly, we learn about how to run as we run. Most importantly, we learn about who we are running with, none less than Lord Jesus Christ.
There will be obstacles in the road and people who will try to discourage us, even try to stop us. But, do not stop! Stay on the way! When the people of Israel faced opposition, Moses said, "Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you. He will never leave you nor forsake you." *
Let us aim to follow Paul's example, to run a good race. Believing that he was near the end of his earthly life, he wrote to Timothy, "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." **
* Deuteronomy 31:6
** 2 Timothy 4:7