Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.
Colossians 3:2 (NKJV)
Yesterday I ran the most competitive 5k of my life. I am training, along with my son, to run a 5k race on Mother’s Day weekend in support of the Interfaith Hospitality Network. I’m not much of a runner. It’s something I undertook a couple years ago for the health of my body and my soul. It is an uninterrupted time of quiet prayer, where I move my body while stilling my mind. I call it moving meditation.
My first 5k
The pollen count was brutally high (we just survived the previous weekend), everyone was exhausted, and there was probably every good reason to blow off the run. I ran anyway. I’ve learned that this is a metaphor for so much we’re trying to avoid in life; I don’t feel like going to worship today (go anyway). I don’t want to walk the dog (walk him anyway). I don’t feel like being the bigger person (model Christ anyway).
There were other people on the track. I fancy myself a solitary runner, and was inclined to bail because of the “traffic”…I ran anyway. With every turn, I felt pollen burning my throat, dismissed the Benadryl I’d taken as having not done enough, felt fat (don’t we all, sometimes), felt no drive to keep going. I ran anyway.
When, with just a few more meters to run, I checked my splits, I realized I had the opportunity to run a 30 minute 5k. The last time I ran competitively, I was proud to have finished in less than 35 minutes. Tired, allergic, running without my wingman (my son recently twisted his ankle and can’t run with me again until Tuesday), I found enough within me to keep going. I had a goal in mind. As my great granny would say, “I set my mind to doing….”
I finished. And as I was cooling down, a song I hadn’t even realized was on this playlist ministered to me (Lord, You always find a way to speak to me…)
If there were no gates of pearl
If there were no streets of gold
If there was no other world
And a land where we won't grow old
If I never hear an angel sing
In a far off holy land
If I never hear a joy bell ring
Sing a chorus in a Christian band
I'm not thinking about those sights
Won't be there to enjoy the view
I think heaven will be alright
As long as You’re there, as long as there is You
As long as there's You by Donnie McClurkin
As long as there’s You. Wow. If we set our minds, He is there. If we can just hold on, He is there. Remember the woman with the issue of blood? He said, “…Daughter, be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace.” (Luke 8:48 NKJV) She didn’t give up, and neither did I. I wasn’t so much the that I finished (though that was good), it wasn’t so much the time (though that was great), it was the clear message that I wasn’t along, and I always had it within me (through Him) to succeed. It feels like I’m better understanding the last couple blogs I wrote….based upon Philippians 4:13 and Psalms 143.
Lord, You’re speaking to me in ways that I’m getting…more readily. I’m present to hear You, finally.
Present to hear You, discernment. Today’s evidence that God is good.