It was relay day at school, and I had been picked to run for my class (3rd or 4th grade-can’t remember). All my friends knew I was a good runner; I could run like the wind! The race started and sure enough I took off like a gazelle, but right close to the end, I got scared I wouldn’t be able to stop myself and would undoubtedly crash into the crowd. I tried to slow down an instead tripped and fell, scabbing my knees and hands. We lost the race and from that moment on, every time I ran, the same feeling would come over me. Funny how silly things enter our minds and challenge our potential…
I’d like to say, I got over that, but to be honest, I’ve seen that scenario play over and over again in many areas of my life. An uncanny and unexplained fear of crashing when I have the advantage and everything seems to be on my favor. It would be so easy to close my eyes and let the wind carry me the rest of the way, but because I run conscious of the goal, I cannot close my eyes and thus, fear creeps in. Ironic, isn’t it?[quote style=”boxed”]If you want to succeed in the world, you must make your own opportunities as you go on. The man who waits for some seventh wave to toss him on dry land will find that the seventh wave is a long time a coming. You can commit no greater folly than to sit by the roadside until some one comes along and invites you to ride with him to wealth or influence. -John B. Gough[/quote]
I know what you’re thinking, “we are not meant to live in fear Beba, get over it!” Well you’re right. What’s the point in living if we are not going to push forward and reach the goals we set for ourselves? You know what? It’s a constant struggle for me. I want to take life by the throat (sort of speak) and jujitsu it into submission, but I usually end up tapping out. I just rather protect my self from those unattractive cauliflower ears, you know what I mean? (Watch UFC and you’ll get it). I want a smooth ride; and if I were really honest with myself, I would much rather fly than run because is safer. Or maybe I want to run like Forest Gump; run until I reach the end of the road and then stop the running.
You know what’s funny though, for all the evading and safety precautions, I always seem to end up a bloody mess. Here’s the kicker, I have married a man who lives on the edge. I mean, talk about being a dreamer, he dreams big and goes after his dreams fearlessly regardless of the outcome. He wanted to fly planes, so he got his pilot license and he flies planes. He felt a strong call to ministry and well, he got his license and today he is an ordained bishop. He has self-taught himself how to play several musical instruments, how to build websites, he’s a world traveler and has just started a new organization. All through our marriage, I have watched him accomplish one thing after another and I’ve never seen him second guess or compromise his dreams because of obstacles or fear. So, I’ve learned to run by him. He runs much faster than I, but I don’t mind running at my own pace. I have learned from years of running by his side that speed won’t necessarily make me a better person (unless I was an olympian). I know if he gets to the finish line before I do, he will wait there cheering me at the finish line.
There are many things I want to do; several dreams and goals to accomplish before I am not able to run anymore. I’ve been blessed to accomplish several of those dreams and goals through the years. But I want to be perfectly honest with you, I still run cautiously. I still have moments of second guessing myself and wishing I could fly. But I encourage myself with the words of the Apostle Paul;
You’ve all been to the stadium and seen the athletes race. Everyone runs; one wins. Run to win. All good athletes train hard. They do it for a gold medal that tarnishes and fades. You’re after one that’s gold eternally -1 Corinthians 9:24(MSG)
I don’t want to stop running. I really want to run fast and finish strong. I’m praying for strong legs that won’t shake at the sight of obstacles. I’m also praying for eyes that stay fixed on the goal. And finally, I pray for the heart of a lion; strong and brave. Flying might be fun, but it is…uneventful, I think. Running takes effort, sweat, pain, stamina and in the end, pride. If you see yourself in my banter today, my prayer for you is the same as mine; that we will run fast, faster, ridiculously fast and beat the odds stacked up against us.