So there I was jogging and walking, well mostly walking during that 2nd mile. The crowd around me seemed to stay the same once the first mile was done and the true athletes took their positions. The group that I ran by became comfortable to me. When one of us would begin to pass the other, it was just a matter of time before the other would catch up restoring the original positions.
During this mile, I found myself talking to God a lot. Asking Him to get me through this; just enough to get me accross the line. I didn't care what position I would be in at that point. But it was this mile that everything changed. You see it was here in this painful place that I realized that this race was in my mind. Of course I was racing physically with my feet but the true competitions was all in my thinking.
I spent more time worrying about the others around me than focusing on my breath. I was looking non stop to see if anyone was going to pass me or if I could catch up to the others ahead of me. I started to pray for focus. God revealed to me that this race was about me and Him, no one else.
As I rounded the final part of the race I realized that if I decided to do it my body would follow. I made up my mind that this race was nothing more than an example of my endurance in life. I could walk the rest of the way or I could run. If I walked, it would be good enough, besides I signed up for the race right? But if I chose to run, it would hurt. It would definately be hard, but boy it would be worth it. I would not be running in vain.
So I ran. I ran hard and as steady as I could. I began to pass others that I was so comfortable with earlier. I decided to not look back, to press on and focus on my journey knowing that the finish line was ahead. I started to concentrate on what I was doing, taking every thought captive (2 Corinthians 10:5) so that I wouldn't concentrate on quiting. Counting my steps helped, 10 walking....10 running, 10 walking....20 running, 10 walking....40 running, etc. When I would hit the 10th step of walking, it would take a choice to run again.
Toward the end I started to think it would never end. I was hot, tired, and really couldn't breathe. Just then I saw a friend that had finished the race. The veteran runner was walking to go cheer on his wife to finish her first 5k. As I saw him, he began to cheer me on, telling me that I was almost there. To keep going, to concentrate on my steps, to just not stop.
Ok we will continue soon... until then take some time to think about your journey. Are you concentrating on the others around you instead of your journey? Are you comparing yourselves to other parents, spouses, Christians? Are you taking those thoughts captive that are telling you that you will never make it or that you will never be as patient as so and so? Or what about the voice that tells you if you aren't serving or giving as much as so and so, God just isn't going to cheer you on in your race.
This journey is between you and God. We need to be listening to His promptings via the Holy Spirit. We need to be careful of the advice that others give, if it does not line up with God's word, don't receive it! We need to run the race, focused on the goal and choosing to be uncomfortable, sore, tired, and sometimes out of breath, because people it will be so worth it!