In all my years of exercising, running has always been my least favorite activity. Perhaps it dates back to gym class, which I disliked on just about every level. It didn’t help that I was known for getting hurt in gym class… hit with a ball or frisbee or whatever object we happened to be using. I cannot catch. Running around the gym or track felt like a boring punishment. But lately, due to being in between gym memberships, and due to the desire to soak in every last sunny day before the cold weather of Ohio strikes, I have been adding in a short morning jog to my routine.
Each day I make myself jog just a little further than the day before.
I jog, and then walk, and then stretch, and then… down one smooth paved trail, I sprint. I run as fast as I possibly can for a very short distance. I push myself to charge down the road on that last little bit.
But before I sprint, I overcome fear. I am so consumed with fears, that I have caught myself being afraid… to run.
I am afraid of looking stupid.
In the middle of nowhere. I am afraid of looking stupid in the middle of nowhere.
I am afraid that I won’t be able to finish what I begin.
I am afraid of losing my footing, tripping over a shoelace, and falling flat on my face.
I am afraid of getting hurt.
I am afraid of doing it wrong. Like, maybe it’s the wrong form, or I jogged, walked, stretched, and sprinted in the wrong order.
I am afraid that I’m too old.
But I refuse to allow fear to dictate my life. It torments me. It tries to hold me back. So I live aware of this, and I take it on.
I stare that pavement down. And then, I just… run. I run with the road. I allow it to take me on its path. I charge off the fears as I charge with the pavement.
And when I am done… it feels so good. To not be held back. To not care about what I look like.
Even if I fell and had to go back to the starting line to try again, at least I tried.
I believe that God is preparing us for so much more. In this current life, He continuously knocks my socks off with His LOVE for us. And in the life to come, more than we can ever hope or imagine. But for now, today, with the road before us, we either walk forward slowly and afraid, or we charge off the fears and charge into the goodness that lies ahead.
Faith or fear? You choose. For me, I do not want to be so far behind on missing out on all the good things that I “could have experienced”, but was too afraid to run into, for fear of doing it wrong. Or fear of not being good enough. Or fear of others not approving of what I knew was right. Fears will hold onto us so tightly that we MISS OUT on all the goodness that is lying ahead.
Life is an adventure. Run with it! Unafraid. And when the fears try to hold you back, charge them off as you charge into the pavement. When you fall, because you will fall sometimes, go back to the starting line and run again.