We’ve all heard the cliches about hard work. You get out of something what you put into it. Pray like it all depends on God, work like it all depends on you. Hard work equals success. Talent only gets you so far. Luck is the residue of design. Let me know of others – I’m sure there’s lots more out there.
Yes, this is more about my running. But more than about my running. When I run, I am praying. Every morning, within my first few steps, I am giving God that run, that morning, that day… my life.
And it’s while I’m running – it’s when I’m not plugged in, when I’m not changing a diaper, when I’m not keeping sisters from arguing or dealing with the myriad of issues (both real and imagined) the high schoolers deal with – that I hear God most clearly. All of the best retreats I’ve planned have come to me while running. All of my best days are days with good runs. (And yet, any day with a bad run is still better than a day with no run.)
So, while I’m out there running, I’m out there sweating. It is through that sweating – through that pushing myself – through that challenging – through that daily morning routine that I open myself up. As Berry Simpson in “Running with God” tell us:
“Sweat is the currency of runners. We use it to make daily payments towards our dreams and goals. …At the finish of any race, you’ll find runners who have paid the price in full, their sweat-drenched bodies glistening in the sun, their once pained muscles now happy. Sweat is universal. Sweat is honorable. Sweat is worthwhile.”
While I’m out there sweating, I’m not just running, I’m not just working towards my goals – I am open to being moved by the Ultimate Mover. I am beginning my day the best way I know how – with my run & my prayer combined – and at the same time, I am listening.
Sure, I’m dodging distracted drivers (no more make-up while moving – save it for the stoplights – and please, before you turn right, look right because that’s where pedestrians are supposed to be), I’m jumping over potholes, I’m trying not to give the death face, and I’m pushing my limits.
But most of all, while I’m running, I’m listening. To the clarity, the peace, the truth, the inspiration and the challenge that my Creator is placing on my heart for that day.
I definitely don’t believe that running is what everyone should be doing. As Dr. George Sheehan always said “Find your own play, your own self-renewing compulsion, and you will become the person you are meant to be.”
Running is my movement – it is my get up and go activity each day. It is in that time that I am moved by Christ, who gave me that ability to get up and go. Running both moves me, and it opens me up to be moved by our creator. I pray that you allow yourself to move, and to be moved by Christ.