I used to run.
I tried cross country in Jr. High, but decided it wasn’t for me. In high school, I found I could run fast. I discovered the existence of a whole new gear that kicked in when I had a soccer ball at my feet. In college, I’d run from my apartment to class and from one class to the next if I was going outside. Not because I was late, but just because… something said run, so I did. Why walk when you can run? I liked it.
Later, I began to run far. Something said run, so I did. I thought it would be a good experience to run a marathon… so I signed up, began to train (sort of), and ran one. (I use the term “run” loosely in this case, since real marathoners may describe my last several marathon miles as something quite different from running!) The idea of ultra-marathons is fascinating to me, but so far, the fascination hasn’t been strong enough to overcome the knowledge my body has about what it would have to go through!
I used to run.
Then I stopped.
I never decided I didn’t want to run anymore. I didn’t consciously come to the conclusion that I was too old to run. I didn’t knowingly phase running out of my life, and there was no injury that kept me from running. I just ran one day, then the next I didn’t.
But, there was often something inside that kept saying, “Run.” Sometimes, my wife even suggested “Why don’t you go for a run or something?” Often, I wanted to run, I just couldn’t or didn’t muster up the strength to shake off the depression that kept me from doing it. For a couple years, I’ve always had some kind of resistance that kept me from running. Too busy… too cold… I don’t feel good…
But today, I ran.
It was just a little over a mile. Not much. But it’s something. I didn’t run fast, and I didn’t run far, but I ran.
Life is like this sometimes… God can gnaw at your inner hearing, sometimes gently prodding, sometimes pushing with great force toward your next step. He is the voice inside that urges us to “run” a great life. Don’t just sleepwalk through the dreams God has for you. Answer His call to run. And don’t stop until you find yourself both exhausted and invigorated at the finish, in the company of all those who’ve run ahead.