Last weekend I traveled over night with my dad to do a triathlon. My dad first got me into running the summer after I graduated from college. I have been so thankful to get to do several marathons with him. A few years ago he started doing triathlons--crazy, I know. He really is an inspiration to so many out on the race course--usually finishing last, but with the best smile and sense of humor to match. (As he finished, he said, "down to the lake, I'm doing it again!")
Here is our picture before we left.
-you've got to dig a grandpa who wears a shirt with a picture of his grandkids on it!
This was only my second triathlon so I was a bit nervous. So nervous that I forgot my swim cap in the car, needed a stranger with a similar road bike to show me how to switch gears (I hadn't ridden Tim's "race" bike since the fall) and almost got disqualified while figuring out the gear thing for riding around the parking lot without my helmet on! And this was all before the race started.
Then the race started and except for the initial swim panic, you know, deep water, lots of kicking and splashing, I settled in for a pretty enjoyable hour and forty-four minutes. The race course was beautiful and the weather perfect.
During the run, I started feeling worn down. My legs were tired, I had to potty and the hills kept on rolling. I did my usual head down so I could only see a few feet in front of me. I think this helps me to keep a bit more focused. When I look straight ahead, the hills and distance left can intimidate me. I can get caught up in the long distance instead of the small distance that every step I take covers, which brings me closer to the finish.
I was thinking of this technique as I pushed through and I thought, wow, that is really Biblical.
"Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?...do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."
"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."
We are all in a race--the race of life. How should we be running? We can always be looking way into the distance (future) and worrying how it will all pan out. Or we can see all the obstacles that seem to be blocking our finish line and get discouraged and even give up.
We can, in essence, put our head down, focus on Jesus and run. We can take our small daily steps forward in the direction that He leads us and not allow the hills/obstacles to cause us to change course. We can trust that every step is bringing us closer to His desired outcome for our lives.
How's your running?