Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Running and Real Life.


I know I've posted this picture before, but words could not possibly express to you the joy that I receive regularly at the top of this hill. This picture doesn't do it justice. Ah, how I wish you could join me there.

Let me describe to you my run this morning. Mostly up-hill, through an absolutely entirely cute town, rain lightly misting my face, barely daylight (but still safe, Daddy, don't worry) watching faces light up as I simply say "Good Morning" and pass the Walish people who are up early and going to work. I push through to the top (the last half is the steepest- it looks like it goes straight up) and my legs burn. All I can think about is the music going through my ears and how this run is so similar to what life feels like sometimes. I'm putting all my energy forth, sometimes it feels like I'm not moving anywhere- the top is not in sight and relief seems forever away. I begin to wonder if I'll ever get there. I can feel like that so regularly throughout my days here. So much emotional energy. Overlooking offenses, speaking Truth to myself, battling my sin-- I was tempted two nights ago to foolishly wonder, "Does it even matter?" "Is fighting my sin even worth it when it seems to have no effect and no one cares?" But there is One who cares. And then I came across Galatians 6:7-10 which encourages me to not be deceived. God is not mocked. What I sow, that will I reap. If I live based on my emotions and feelings, and I do what I want when I want, I will reap corruption. But if I speak Truth to myself, and apply God's Word, from the Spirit, I will reap life eternal. All because Christ did what I could not do on the cross. He encourages me to not grow weary of doing good. For in due season, I will reap, if I don't give up. These "good works" do not earn my salvation- but now being free from sin because of Jesus' sacrifice, I can choose to do good. I am free to serve others. Free from serving myself. And oh how I must cling to these promises-- for I have nothing else to hold on to!

So as I force one foot in front of the other, through my ipod I'm hearing of GRACE upon GRACE that empowers me. Just keep going. Be faithful with the "now"...you'll see the end soon. It makes me think of Dorie in Finding Nemo-- "Just keep swimming, just keep swimming..." James 1:12 is on the back of my door in my room. It says, "Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love Him." Again, clinging to promises with hope. And just like in real life, I don't know how I made it, but I'm there. I'm at the top. And this sight- the one that you see above, is what my eyes behold. And as my heart screams, "VICTORY!" I am reminded that victory will soon come in real life, too...but it will be even better than defeating this small hill. The blessings and relief that are to come, are far greater than anything I could imagine. I attempt to catch my breath, and am so glad its over-- but so glad I endured at the same time. I feel stronger now. Not in my own strength, but in His. Amazed that His grace enabled me yet again. To do what felt impossible.


Crystal Joy said...

Wow! How beautiful!

Anonymous said...

God is so good to us!


Vanessa said...

sounds amazing!
ps...did you say "Walish" ???

Debi said...

JJ - I read this post after I send you my e-mail. You'll see that between the quote and the word I shared some thoughts about sowing and reaping!!! It seems that God is really honing in this point to encourage you that your thoughts are actually His thoughts giving you just what you need when you need it! Isn't God amazing? Only He knows how to give us what we need - and it is always good!! What a great post - and the view - ahh!!! I can smell the sweet air now...