Running Lessons

ImageAlthough I enjoy running there are things that surprise me when it comes to running.It surprises me how quick I can try to talk myself out of a run. If I’m not able to talk myself out of a run, then I may try to shorten it. For example in my mind I’ll tell myself you don’t need to go that far, do you know how long it has been since you ran, I don’t have anything to prove, it might rain you better cut it short, oh the creek is flooded I should turn around, what about that ache in my upper back from your last run. Even when I do fight through it mentally and I do an okay run I’ll attempt to talk myself out of finishing on the monster hill (Shuman St). 

This is one of the the reasons I enjoy running, because I find these issues flow into other parts of my life. When I don’t want to love my wife well and fight selfishness how will I respond? When work and ministry have me tired yet my children want to play will I exert energy and enjoy God’s gift to Diana and I. I don’ want to cut corners leading my children. When the alarm on Sunday for set-up goes off will I ignore and let the rest of the team set-up for church or will I push through so that a group of people in Winston Salem come together for great worship in music and teaching of God’s word. When the week is hectic and not finishing the questions for Life Group is attractive will I resist the temptation to just wing it? When daunting challenges at work scream you just need a breather will I persevere and press on? 

Sometimes you have to just grind through a run and often you have fight through dry times in relationships and difficult challenges in work and/or ministry.

I’m glad runs aren’t always tough to get through, but when they are there are so many lessons to learn.


Religion as Consolation

I enjoyed this paragraph from Dick Keyes who is addressing skeptic’s consideration of  religion as consolation.

” Jesus warned would-be disciples of the costs and dangers of following him. If we take him at his word, he invades the orderliness of our well-planned lives; he demolishes precious illusions of our self-sufficiency and self-righteousness, and he unsettles our complacency. He challenges our autonomy in his world and commits us to following his way, which led him to persecution and crucifixion. This does not sound like consolation or comfort.”