Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Not Part II...

I know I promised a Part II to my last post, but...well...I've been kinda busy. With what, you might ask?

Well, with:
1. Photography. This is my busy season and I'm also taking the opportunity to do some extra marketing.

2. Family. I have a new nephew that I am head-over-heels in love with and I recently had a fun sleepover night with the other kiddos, followed by weekend of fun and festivities.

3. Meeting, playing with, and being slobbered on by a Bassett Hound for the first time.

4. Prepping for my first ever 5k.

I started "running" back in May. I say "running" because I'm not sure what I do actually qualifies. I'm very slow. Other joggers and some walkers pass me up and, due to various injuries, I've not been able to sustain my longer run times. I've run for 30 minutes without stopping a couple of times, but when I have to stop running for a week or two due to an injury, I basically have to start over again. Right now, I can run a little more than a 1/4 of a mile without stopping...which is about 3 or 4 minutes. I'm building back up, and praying I don't get injured again, but the 5k is this weekend and, well, I'm not expecting any major increase before then. At this pace, though, "running" for a quarter-mile and walking for about the same, I should finish the 5k in under an hour, which is my goal. Considering my size and that prior to May my "exercise" was walking to the kitchen for more food, I'm determined to be happy just to get through the day without creating a medical emergency that will then appear on the nightly news.

One thing I've learned, though, is, if I keep my eyes on my next step...not on the long road ahead of me...going farther is less of a struggle. I can take this next step, and the next one, and the one after that...what I can't see myself doing is making it all the way to the next landmark where I get to walk again and recover a bit. Once I started doing that, focusing on just the next step, I tripled my time. I went from running one minute to 3. Not too shabby for a simple mind shift! As I rejoiced in that achievement, God spoke and showed me how that principle applies to life. There is so much about my life right now, my life over the past 15 years, that I wish were different, trials that are still going strong, battles with sin and weakness and habits, hopes that keep getting dashed or deferred. When I look into the future and see the same trials, the same sin, the same unfulfilled hopes, its overwhelming, impossible-feeling, and my desire to fight or even try at all evaporates like a drop of water in the desert.  But, when I focus on what is immediately before me, the conflict at hand, the choice I need to make, the heart pang I need to submit to the Lord...its manageable, its possible. Following through and doing so, taking that next step, though it may be momentarily difficult, is not nearly as painful and hope-draining as looking into the future, forecasting doom, and giving up...in fact, its hope-building. It also brings peace, too. Agreeing with God in the moment-by-moments of life gives us strength for the long haul, but we can only get there...to the peace and the obedience and the strength for the long haul...when we realize that the long haul is God's deal. Ours is to do the next thing in faith, trusting that He will meet us, and will bring us to the place we need to be on down the road.

Looking back to see how far you've already come helps, too.

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