by Danetta Kellar
…the Lord will go before you, And the God of Israel will be your rear guard. Isaiah 52:12b, NASB
I was determined to run the race.
It was the third annual trail run, and I had run it the previous two years. This time I had just returned to running after recovering from a broken foot, and now my hip was injured to boot. I was in the poorest condition ever for the intense three-mile run up a mountain at an elevation of nearly 2000 feet above sea level.
This race was important to me. It symbolized a mountain in my personal life that I had to prove to myself I could climb, no matter my limitations.
There are some hard things in life that we would be justified, even applauded, to abandon. They cause us pain and strain and stretch us thin and transparent, allowing others to see the ugly inside. We’d be better off if we just quit and walked away. That’s what others say, anyhow.
There is indeed a time to walk away. But there is also a time to stay. A time to hold on against the howling wind, leaning into the strain, hanging on with all we have and crying out to God for help to endure.
There are races in life only we can run and finish lines we must cross ourselves.
For me, physically running is a spiritual, emotional, and mental exercise. I usually fix my mind on a specific Scripture passage or a pre-planned prayer focus as I raced. This time, however, I had waited and waited for the Lord to show me this race’s focus, but nothing came. Heaven seemed silent.
That morning as I approached the starting line, I had simply prayed, Lord, I am listening. Speak to me today as I run.