So my last post was all about running this race of life with purpose and how, in faith, I believe God has been revealing much of these purposes. What’s very interesting is how, literally, I was training for a September race in Chicago. My last race was the Chicago Marathon in 2007. That was also the year it was shut down due to extreme heat and lack of water on the course. That was a horrible race. You train 8 months rigorously pushing through every run, every injury and somehow, you make it to the finish. I remember when I began training for that race I asked the Lord, “Let this training and this race remind me of my race to the Eternal Finish Lord”….well, I got more than I asked for. During the training I had multiple injuries and a pretty bad bike accident that made it impossible to run for weeks. Then to think, the actual race was shut down! Since they ran out of water on the course, my body was dehydrated by mile 7!! I stopped running around mile 20 but still had to walk the last 6.2 miles to the finish. The pain was excruciating–it seared through every muscle. I praise God that I had a friend with me until the finish line. Barely able to jog, I crossed the finish line without one person cheering and all I saw was a big clock that read 6 hours and 20 minutes…very depressing, huh?! This dear friend though, Ashley Guyer, trained with me through those 8 months although she wasn’t running the marathon. During the actual race, she excitedly jumped in at mile 11 (I remember I could barely hold my head up at that point), prayed with me during the race, then prayed over me when I couldn’t focus and every step was too much to bear. She sang songs of worship and my friend jogged with me across the finish line, cheering as though I had finished in first place. What an awesome depiction of our Lord–what an incredible eternal perspective. And what’s interesting, I’m only realizing now the deeper implications of that prayer as I write this post..hmmm.
The irony, if you will, is that this summer I began training for another race–only a half marathon and I SURELY didn’t pray anything like before! But in the recent training, I found out that I possibly tore my medial meniscus. I have an MRI tomorrow morning. If I did, it means surgery and 4 months of rehabbing the knee back. One of the things I love most, being active: biking, running, hiking, etc, has now come to a halt for a season and it’s truly been difficult. I’m not gonna lie: many tears have been shed over this. And if I may be honest, this was sort of the icing on the cake circumstantially. This race is HARD–like unbearable at times! It doesn’t always make sense in the natural the course He takes us on. I mean, how could Job say, Though He slay me, yet I will hope in Him…indeed this will turn out for my deliverance (13:15, 16)? Wow–what hope, what faith, what a true understanding of Emanuel, our God always with us.
“With my lips I recount all the laws that come from Your mouth”–Just as the Psalmist declared this in Ps. 119:13, we recount all of God’s promises to us, His children, no matter what our circumstances may be. He gives us garments of praise instead of our spirit that grows faint (Is. 61:3). Thank You. No matter the course and where it will wind, I’m believing He is still cheering His children on to that finish line. He doesn’t care about the time on the clock–I do. He cares about this: Though the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat upon the house, and yet it did not fall for it was founded upon the Rock (Matt. 7:25) My prayer for anyone who might read this is that they’d be encouraged by the Lord’s promises to us as we recount what is true and what He’s spoken through His Word. I’m fighting this fight with y’all =)
Sorry to be so long-winded, but I thank you for your prayers in this season and appreciate the time you’re taking to read this. May the Lord bless you as together we hold out in hope; for it will never disappoint.