Running With Endurance – Tough Choices

I Like Running With Endurance

Especially once I’m finished and the race is over- or in my imagination before the race even starts.

Running With Endurance

This morning as I was running I meditated on running with endurance.  My route includes several loops, so at various times I have the opportunity to take the shorter route and go home or continue on to run the full three miles.  At one and a half miles I have the choice of either running back home for a total of two miles or continuing on for a total of three miles.  As I approached the turnoff my mind started playing with the idea of only running two miles today.  After all, I had been sitting in conferences for the last several days and had not had the opportunity to run. Maybe I should ease back into my running schedule and not over do anything.  My good sense and inner Stacie told me that I had no need for taking it easy.  Running three miles is not very much in the overall scheme of things. And besides, I need the exercise.  I felt really good as I ran past the temptation.

A little later, around two miles, I hit a small wall.  As I pushed through it, I realized that had I taken the turn towards home earlier, I could have avoided this. I could have finished the entire run and never hit a wall. It was only in choosing to run further that I actually stretched a little.  As I turned to face the final mile toward home I was actually working a little. I was sweating a lot. I was running with endurance.

I was not running with endurance the first mile.

Or really the second mile for all that. It wasn’t until I started the third mile that I really had to start working hard and running with endurance. When I first started running, I used to hit a wall at the first half mile mark. Back then if I ran a mile, or two, I had to run with endurance most of the way.  But I’m stronger now.  I’ve run more.  Now, I have to run further before I actually get to the point of being able to run with endurance.

There are so many things in life that are like this. You cannot make the hard choice and gain the good benefits until you have gone the distance.  You cannot gain patience until you have been in a trying situation for quite some time already and are at the point of losing patience, and then you decide to hang in there.  You cannot strengthen your muscles until you have reached the normal level of exertion- and then you work some more.  Your faith will not grow until you have gone as far as you can see and then, in obedience to God, you take one more step into the unknown.

Once you have gone as far as it is easy to go, but then you go further- that is running with endurance. 

Do this with me. Go as far as you can in obedience to God, and once you have exhausted all your resources, take one more step!  Let’s finish well by running with endurance the race that is before us! 

Heb 12:1 Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (NKJV)

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