Half Marathon {Be Courageous!}

It probably seems egotistical to share my adventure yesterday, but believe me, I’m just so happy to have finished my first-ever half marathon that I’m giddy. So please don’t take this as bragging, but the happy rants of an unathletic girl who did something that scared her.

Honestly, I never thought I could do this. Especially after my training was intersected with life (Haiti, hospital visits with Julia and a bout of the stomach flu last week.) I didn’t feel fully prepared. And for a time, I almost said no way.

But I decided to give it a go, nervous tummy and all.

The day started off muggy and warm (in the 70s) so that I had to dump water on me at every station. I started the race with my friend Pat (below), but she finished before me.

In fact, lots of people finished before me. And that’s way okay. This was not a competition, unless you count competing with yourself and all those voices in your head telling you about your wonky arches, raw blisters, and tired lungs.

(Yep, that’s redfaced me about mile 8).

I’ve never run farther than ten miles when I started the race. I knew if I could get to ten, I would reason that the last three were doable. I hit a wall at mile eleven, but then regrouped and kept going.

When I saw the finish line, something roared up within me, this holy ache to finish. I sprinted my last bit. And then I smiled again. To do something that scared me, then face it and “win” really changed me. Jesus helped, for sure. Hubby helped too with all his encouragement along the way.

But I’ll never forget that last sprint. It made me think about the end of my life, how I don’t want to limp toward heaven, but make a glorious effort at the end of my life. Which is one reason why I did the half–to keep myself young, to keep risking, to keep trying hard things. I won’t grow unless I put myself in those situations.

As I get older, the tendency is toward safety and what is known. It’s to get stuck in a rut, or to seek comfort at any cost. This was uncomfortable (you should’ve seen me limp to the car). This running adventure was not known. I’m so glad I risked. I’m so glad I ran. I’m so glad to be done! 🙂

Mind if I pray for you?

Jesus, I pray for anyone reading this post today that You would ignite a holy fire to try hard things. To risk instead of bask in safety. Help us all to run with endurance the race set before us. Let us not limp toward the end of our lives, but to thrive, grow, and keep seeking things that make us uncomfortable. When we’re comfortable, we have no need of You. When things are easy, we can easily rely on ourselves. Stir the nest, Jesus, so it’s uncomfortable, so that we will walk with You in daring adventure instead of calculated ease. Do something new! Give us courage and bravery. Amen.

Here’s the prayer in graphic form. Feel free to copy, print and use as a reminder every day to be daringly brave.

Q4U: What crazy-scary-risky thing have you done where Jesus met you and helped you finish?

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