Run.

13 01 2012

This week, with all that I am learning and being challenged in, there is something built in me that naturally, sinfully, wants to do the opposite.

Run.

I look back at my ‘spiritual’ journey, times of when I thought it began to when it really began are very different. Either way, I think I was still on a spiritual journey… wrestling it out until it was made clear. During most of my journey, all I would do was run. Run far from God, and try to run from myself. I had moments of surrender and self-pity and ask God to forgive me if He was able. But no matter what, I always chose to continue to run.

Run far
and fast
from Him.

A year ago, I actually began the process of running, and training for a half marathon. It actually became something that I really enjoyed. I was doing something that I had never cared about, or thought I could do. A friend of mine started helping me out, and really pushed me beyond my limits. It was awesome. The crazy thing is though, when you begin to grow so well in one area, there is this natural tendency or pull to drag you from it, or to just slightly twist your thinking, your view. And if you aren’t careful, it can become bad if not, sinful. For me it was through pride. I had never thought much about myself, but once I started to run, I started to use that to build myself up. In a way, that was really good for me, but then I took it to far. I ran with it. I showed off that I had run 9 miles that morning or night. I flaunted the fact that I had lost so much weight and could now tan in a two-piece bikini everyday and not be ashamed. I thought of myself superior than my friends in this area, just because I could do something they could not.

As they always say, pride comes before the fall.

And it did. Indeed.

Two weeks before my half, I was running my nine mile route; I would begin on this incredibly steep hill, and end my last mile on it. As I was almost finished with my ninth mile, I was running down this hill and…. I have no idea what happened, but my knee gave out. I did not break or tear anything, I just messed something up. I could barely walk home I was in so freaking much pain. I couldn’t run for months, and it was the hardest thing to go to the LiveStrong Half Marathon in Austin and watch these thousands of people run, knowing I was supposed to be doing that too. I was so angry with myself. It killed the pride that was inside of me, and goodbye $135.00. ha. I truly deserved it.

The last few weeks, I have been itching to run again. I will be walking outside and I just want to take off. I just want my legs to go go go and go until I can’t move. I wonder if my physical desire to run has any sort of parallel with my spiritual walk because I feel that inside my heart as well.

Even in the midst of all the challenges that seems to be stirring inside of my heart, I equally feel this tug, this pull that seems to be growing to run. To just get away, and just be alone.  I begin thinking too much, and when I get overwhelmed I like to run from God, because I cannot think through anything. I get so consumed in my own thinking, I can never stay afloat, and it proves my lack of trust in the Lord. I do not trust Him enough with my thoughts or feelings. I’m just not quite sure if He can handle them, or if He even really cares.

I honestly think it’s the enemy. There are certain areas of my heart that have been shared with a very (very) few close friends, and as they continue to ask me about those pieces, those struggles and fears, I see that I just want to run away. Part of me ‘running’ in my spiritual life is to isolate; to close off from people (that know me very well) until I can suppress everything deep enough to where I can hold it together when the questions are asked.

But I can’t. I can’t quit now. I can’t give up. I gotta keep moving. Not only moving, but I need to get up and run to Jesus! I am being pulled and pushed away with my natural and sinful nature, but Christ has redeemed me and saved me from my flesh! And that should be all the reason to get up and keep running and fighting towards Him! I feel like I get pushed and knocked around more than others, and a lot of times it is with my own thoughts and battles within my heart, but it is worth it. This life may be a non-stop battle (that is how it has felt most of the time), and I think I envy and get jealous of so many people not having to fight out their own demons so often. But I suppose this is the road I’m called on, and if it is, then, I want to run it well. I want to continue to get up eight times if I’m knocked down 7.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” Hebrews 12:1-3

I will choose to get up.
I will choose to continue to run;
Towards the Cross.
I will choose to continue to fight my flesh.
I will choose to apply the gospel,
Because everything else will vanish in it.
All that I endure is nothing;
Compared to what Jesus did…

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