Category Archives: Running

The God of Wonders Winks at Me

Standard


God does things sometimes just to show Himself.  Just to show off. Just to let you know that His power is a subtle as it is mighty. Just to let you know that your love for inside jokes actually came from Him.  He likes to wink at you through what this world would have you believe is a “coincidence.” He loves that. And I love that about Him. 

Last year I was asked to speak at a Senior Graduation breakfast and God was so clear about what I should say to them.  Tell them how to run their race. . . A good race. . . A holy race. . . To run the road that leads to my peace. . . To let ME be their race director. . . To stay the course through hard things . He was insistent upon that being the topic.  

I was glad for it when the event rolled around. Because it would be my first talk since my daughter moved to heaven. I was weak, heartbroken, vulnerable, and afraid to speak for the first time in my life.  I was in a place that no one wants to speak from.  I’d rather speak from a place of strength. 

But I could talk about the marathon and the lessons God teaches us through that.  I had been there in a way that had become part of who I am.  The morning of the breakfast I felt unsure of what might happen. Would I break down and let my grief filled tears spill out over young and hopeful  graduates? Would I be filled with too much anxiety to get out of the car and be the only speaker that made it 10 feet from the church but never entered? 

As I was asking myself these questions , my Facebook memories popped up and there it was: that wink from God that said ” you got this kiddo.”  I had forgotten but on that same day 5 years earlier I had run the OKC marathon in horrible conditions. It actually hailed on us at Mile 24. And God delivered me to that finish line just like He would deliver me to the last line of the speech. How charming of Him.  And how encouraging to me. 


That was so awesome! It was almost as awesome as this morning when both of those memories popped up on the day I am driving home from escorting my sister in Christ, Michelle through her own holy marathon. I couldn’t have planned it. I didn’t realize it. I’m shocked by that and not surprised by it at all.  Because He is SO like that and I love Him so.  

I’m confident that I’m not the only child He reveals himself to in this way. When you come upon the unreal, the hard to believe, and the amazingly coincidental- – I beg you to look a little deeper because He’s probably winking at you. And you don’t want to miss that, Trust me. 

Running our Races

Standard


My best friend ran a marathon today.  26.2 faith stretching miles.  A feat that feels out of reach for most humans but is an easy accomplishment for our God.  A journey with Him that parallels our spiritual walk through this life in so many ways.   My heart has been fatigued and sinking a lot this year and she’s met me at each of my grief  filled “miles” with support and nourishment.  Sometimes there was nothing she could do except just be beside me as I ran this difficult race in often “crappy” conditions. 

It filled my heart with such joy to see God deliver her to victory. To see her faithful pursuit of hard and holy work according to His call. It reminded me of my own love affair with the metaphor that the marathon will always be for me. In 2010, I ran my first marathon as I was just starting my friendship with Michelle.  I thank God for delivering her to my life and to that glorious finish line.  

I believe the marathon was a pretty important primer and prep for significant adversity I would face in my life. I believe I learned lessons on that course that have made it possible for me to stay the course on the hard path prepared for me.  Some of those lessons I captured right after the race long before I had a blog. I called them Reflections on 26.2 but they were all about the awesomeness of my God. 

Reflections on 26.2 October 12, 2010

Why would anyone want to run 26.2 miles? What on earth would possess you to do that? In January of 2008 we learned that Jackson was missing a tiny piece of a chromosome. . . Something called PWS. . . Something scary. . . Something that seemed impossible. . . Something that would change our lives forever. 

Can I do what I will ask him to do? Persevere through great difficulty . . . Deny myself that which I crave. . . Continue to push through great discomfort that feels like too much. . . Accomplish something amazing beyond my natural abilities. . . Trust My Heavenly Father to see me through. . . Who Am I? Where does my power come from? Am I powerful even though I feel I’m never enough? How will my story end? Will fear and endless toil find relief? 

All questions that must be answered and they could only be answered through a partnership between God and myself. So that’s what we did. I grabbed a training schedule and an expensive pair of shoes and gave Him my time and attention.  And He grabbed my soul and wrestled until deep pockets of fear and self doubt were replaced with faith and security. 

This was a grueling class and the final exam came at 4 am on marathon morning when I awakened and proceeded to puke my guts into a trash can for the next two hours. The final exam had only one question on it: through a trash can of puke God asked me, “do you trust me?” My hearts reply was I trust you God.  If today is not the day for me to accomplish this task it is because you are protecting me from something I wil never have to go through. Or because I am not spiritually mature enough to let go of myself and give you the full glory for what you are wishing to do. Either way I trust you and I have loved my time with you on every run during every prayer. 

God desires to do seemingly impossible things with our lives if we will let Him. He will turn devastation  into victory and overcome unsurmountable  obstacles for our joy. He will quiet your stomach and your very soul to take you on a spiritual adventure like no other.  You see God is preparing me for the calling on my life in every experience He brings into my life just like a training schedule prepares you for a marathon. 

We will breeze along through much of it- – not even aware of how much I need Him–much like the first 13.1 miles of yesterday’s race.  And then there will be times of pain and darkness where I will beg for the energy just to make it through fully doubting that I can. But He will never forget me. . . He will always show up. . . He may ask me to relax and stretch like He did at Mile 18 or He may ask me to dig deeper and lean into HIM like He did at Mile 25 when He gave me the desire to finish stronger than I started. 

And most importantly after we take this unbelievable journey of  faith and tears and trials and sufferings and victories in Him. . . We will be Surrounded by His supernatural love and peace . . . Fully relieved of the strain of this life and United by Power and Mercy beyond our imagination. He gave me so many gifts along the way but this hopeful vision of my true future of resting in HIM will prove the most valuable to me . . . And so ” I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Jesus Christ is calling us” phillipians 3:14 and I strive to lead a life that is worthy of the calling I have received Ephesians 4:1 To God Be the Glory Great Things He Has done!