On that note, I have recently started training for a half marathon. Not being the biggest fan of running, I still understand the importance of remaining healthy. Personally, I like setting the bar high for myself. I have Mr. Salyers, my high school track coach to thank for this. All those miles in that summer heat have shown me how far I can push myself. I can literally remember him spraying us with a water hose when we went by because the temperature was in the high 90s. Getting back to my car and not being able to press the gas pedal because my legs were so finished after practice. A half marathon is a long ways though (13.1 mi to be exact). I don't think I've ever ran that far in one setting. I chose the coach setting on the Nike Running Ap and picked the
First, let's talk about getting started. How many times have you told yourself or others that you're going to do something? How many times have you actually done that something? For me, I talk a big game and hardly ever follow through. It's actually sad how many times I haven't followed through. My biggest example would be drinking pop. I always say I'm going to stop drinking pop and never do. I really didn't want to fall into the same pattern again with my running schedule.
Getting Started. At the church I attend here in Indianapolis (Grace Church), we have been doing a study on the prophets. I love learning about the prophets and some of their crazy stories. When I think about getting started, Jonah seems like the perfect prophet to study. God asked a lot out of Jonah when he told him to go to Nineveh and preach to them their own destruction. This brings a whole new meaning to the phrase, "Hit them when their down." What does Jonah do? He flees in the opposite direction! How many times have you tried to run from a new beginning with God? Maybe, you don't run but you walk only because God didn't give you the order, or maybe you're a back peddler only delaying the commitment or new beginning. The hardest part of any commitment is taking the initial step in the right direction. For me, it was taking the first 3 mile run. In no way does that compare to God's calling on Jonah's life but that's not the point. The point is the first and most important part of commitment is taking the initial step in the right direction. Some of us want to make commitments and experience new beginnings but we want to skip over the most important step. We make excuse after excuse (guilty as charged) until we psych ourselves out of the commitment. Personally, I find myself constantly humbled in a much smaller fashion than Jonah of course, but still humbled. Still questioning why I chose to run in the opposite direction. While it's not easy, it feels good to take that first step. Whether you're stepping into a new relationship with Christ or your first 3 mile run. Let's step forward!
Consistency. In order to be consistent, one must plan ahead. This is the part where I struggle the most. I despise planning. I love that life brings about spontaneity. I thrive in spontaneity. Those unplanned, glorious moments in life. That's what I live for! While that is all that and a hot fudge brownie, it doesn't help me with remaining consistent. It hurts my consistency. Part of making a commitment or having a new beginning is being able to plan or see what's ahead of you. Once again, it takes time and it's not always easy. Is it worth it? Absolutely! It would most definitely be worth it when you feel the weight of God's love on your heart for the first time or cross the finish line of your first half marathon. The problem is that we have to look ahead to even consider that. I tried really hard to come up with some rare bible character to exemplify consistency. Instead, I always ended up coming back to Jesus. Have you ever considered what he had to look forward to? Jesus knew his Father's plan for him. Jesus could have made some really good, plausible excuses to not be consistent with His plan. Instead, he chose to have an eternal perspective. When I say eternal, I mean literally giving every single person a chance at eternity in heaven. Sometimes, I think it's important to have the same perspective when making a commitment or accepting a new beginning. Looking at possible obstacles but seeing the finish line will help you remain consistent. It will motivate you to not only finish but finish strong. Here's to new beginnings and commitments!
Thanks for taking the time to read that long blog. Feel free to encourage me as I post my training runs on facebook leading up to my first half marathon. I'm sure I'll need reminded to remain consistent and finish strong. Peace!
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”