Running, for me, is an epic battle, both emotionally and physically, every time.

Here’s how a typical run goes:

  1. I’m pumped to run.
  2. .5 mile in, I hate it.
  3. 1 mile in, I feel like I might be able to do this.
  4. 1.5 miles in, I hate it.
  5. 2 miles in, I start to hit my stride.
  6. 2.5 miles in, I start to hit the wall.
  7. 3 miles in, I really start cruising.
  8. 3.5 miles in, I feel like I might die.
  9. 4 miles in, I die.
  10. 4.5 miles in, still dead.
  11. Last .5 mile, I get a little more energy.
  12. I’m thrilled to be finished, and can’t wait to do it again.

Am I the only one that has these ups and downs…all in the same run?

See, if I’d quit any along the way, I would’ve kicked myself, because I wouldn’t have experienced that sweet taste of completion.  Because there’s something awesome to be had at the end…the feeling that I did it, I completed what I set out to do, I’ve gotten a good workout in, and I feel tired and energized all at the same time.

We have the tendency, when things get tough, to tucker out.  Give in.  When a relationship is emotionally draining, we’ll give up on it…rather than pushing on through.  When a project reaches that it’s-not-cool-anymore stage, it’s easier to quit than persevere.  When life gets tough, and doing what God’s called you to do seems more than you can bear, it’s much easier to say, “God’s just closing that door” than to say, “God’s called me to it even though it’s unbearably difficult.”

It’s time to finish strong.

What project do you need to give a bit of endurance to?

What idea to you need to keep pressing in on?

What relationship do you need to pursue?

What “closed door” do you need to knock down?

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.  Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air.  No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize. -1 Corinthians 9:24-27