Friday, July 25, 2014

Running: with feet fit for the path

Here we are, almost ready to say good-bye to another summer month. I seem to be experiencing that phrase: "the older you get, the faster time goes." But for the next hour, on Friday, July 25th I am here writing. It is so good for my heart to intentionally take time to be still and be a thinker, an author, a dreamer and reflector.

Chase and I are in Chicago today, getting ready to fly out to Washington in just a few short hours. This will be our first trip, just the two of us, out to visit Chase's brother, his wife Alysia and their ever-growing daughter Emilyn. I'm thankful for a weeks worth of uninterrupted quality time with them. I have felt rather spoiled in the past year, as this will mark my fourth visit with them. Even still I will savor each moment we have, because certainly there will be years and seasons when four whole visits to and from the other side of the Country won't be feasible. But for today I'm thankful for the time we do have. So grateful for relationships and friendships that are so rich and blessed. I'm sure I'll have many pictures to share in a week!

Amidst many other summer activities, Chase and I have enjoyed our runs this summer. I say this partly because I can count on one hand the times that we have had to run in the scorching heat, and for that I am grateful! Recently I have been reflecting on how running has truly been a life-giving exercise for me.

 When I am running, I enter an entirely different world. A world where I forget that other people can still see me. For instance, If you are ever driving down South Shore, you may just see me with hands raised high to the sky or see fist pumps in the air. No need to call for help! I am just having my own little worship service as I run along my route. Like clock work, it is almost a guarantee that no matter what state my heart, mind, body, or soul are in when I take that first step of my run, by the last step I have changed more internally then outwardly.

God has dealt with my heart in some beautiful ways during my runs. Sometimes that looks like releasing strongholds and other times it is undesired circumstances or fears, and for some reason running helps me open up my heart to him in the most freeing way. One evening this summer, Chase and I were headed out for a run and it was just one of those days where I had NO MOTIVATION and part of that was not feeling great physically. As we were stretching in our driveway and talking about how far we would go, I voiced to Chase how I wasn't excited about the run and that I would probably be slow that night. I remember then thinking I should just go back inside and "rest" (having a pity party is more like it). Thankfully there was this deep nudging voice inside me that said: "Don't go inside, go for a run. I have work to do in you." Clinging to that voice, we headed out. We ended up going 5 miles that night, when initially I didn't think I would make it past our street! God is so gracious to me. He uncovered and restored some things in my heart that night, and had I not gone on that run, I would have missed out on the blessing of praising His name and being freed in that particular way.

Hopefully you are seeing that my passion for running goes far beyond the physical act and into something much deeper. Certainly there are many runs where it is much more focused on business.
Especially when training for a race or striving to reach a new PR. I do enjoy the competitive side of running sure, but that isn't WHY I run. I run because of the heart stuff that happens there. The biggest test for me though, is to take away what I've experienced on my runs and live it out in the "race" of life. I desire to be a person who has feet fit for the path. Whatever the path. A bold statement? Absolutely.

I want my life for Christ to be bold. The ironic thing I am learning about "living bold" is that often times the boldness comes out of little moments and ordinary conversations. As I was praying with three of the dearest little kiddos in my life, before tucking them into bed the other night, I asked them where they saw God in their day. Each of them, after taking time in their young hearts and minds to process the question, answered in sincerity. Receiving their heartfelt response was such a joy. A simple question. Three simple responses. One Awesome God.

Oh Lord, my prayer today. Give me feet for the path. Give those whose path is so much more difficult than mine feet for their path too. Let us live BOLDY for You!

No comments:

Post a Comment