Have you heard of a training guide called Run for God? I'm in love. It's similar to Couch to 5K but with a devotional. A friend found it and asked if anyone in our homeschool group would be interested. I was the only to reply so it never came about. However I emailed it to our Believe pastor at church. She's over Life Groups and I was hoping this might make a good one. Sure enough, she agreed so we have a Run for God life group starting in a couple of weeks. I am super excited!
I've been struggling with my runs since having Joshua. It seems my body is totally different than pre-pregnancy. I just couldn't get anything going. So frustrated and down on myself about my FAILURE as a runner that only echoes after my failures as a wife, mom, sister, daughter, friend, sinner....I really just wanted to give up. Give up, go home, and eat as much chocolate as I could stand...every day for the rest of my life. Sound like a plan?
I didn't think so. So one morning as I'm preparing to run (*with* my husband, which means we started out together, he quickly ran ahead, and outran me by miles...literally. He rocks and I totally don't hold that against him.:), I decided this run would be different. I wouldn't run for my own needs or desires. I would run for God. Sound familiar? Hey, I'm not above stealing a catchy phrase. Ha!
Yes, I was thinking of that running program and the significance of the title. Run for God. Why not? Run for His glory (not my own selfish desires), and praise His name every painful step of the way. Give it to him. Let him make or break me.
I still tear up just thinking about that run. I only wanted to run one continuous mile. That's all. One lousy mile and I wasn't going to do it for me anymore. I said "here we go, God" and took off. Oh man, how I wanted to stop and walk a little. Just a couple of steps and then I'd run again, but every time I tried to stop, I would hear "no, not yet." He was leading me and I determined not to stop until He said to.
As I rounded the corner and could see the turn that would take me to the one mile marker, I knew it would take everything in me to make it. And it did. BUT I did it. We did it. In the middle of the road, with my fists in the air, that's exactly what I yelled, "we did it!!! Thank you God." He knew what I needed and He totally delivered...His way which happened to be the exact way I needed.
Obviously it wasn't just about a run. It was more than that. Obedience. Submission. Trust. Faith. Turning it over to the One who makes things happen. Giving up on what I want and only desiring what He wants for me.
It was a miracle mile for me, a turning point, and a wake up to what can happen when I let go and let God. Every run since has been a Run for God. And every single time He has shown up. Every single run has gotten easier, farther, faster. And every single time I have the most amazing conversations with my God.
Tonight was no different. It's been a difficult week. Sickness, heartbreak, exhaustion, and confusion. I've wallowed in self-pity. Thought only of how this week affects me. Wondered "why me?" He spoke to me so plain this afternoon and I knew that we needed a running date. I needed to give this junk in my head and heart to Him so He can do what He does best....Forgive me and love me past my own selfishness. And tonight....we hit another goal. It was just as amazing as the first. I am just as thankful and humbled.
I love our running dates. My God and me. Hitting the pavement. One step at a time. And just when I think I can't go one step further, He pushes me. Encourages me. Showers me with grace that I certainly don't deserve. Clears my head and heart, and sets me on the right path.
I pray that, as we begin this Run for God program, other people will really, truly Run for God and experience the Amazing Grace that I have. That every time their feet hit the pavement, they will give it all to Him so He can bless them as He has blessed me. That they will open their hearts to the One who LOVES us so much. That at the end of their run, they feel that rush and, with their fists in the air, say "we did it!!! Thank you God."