Last night I was sitting in church listening to the guest speaker. My ears perked up as he began talking about how his wife was an avid runner—something he had no appreciation for since he had a car and that was his preferred method for getting from one place to another.
I kind of half-laughed when he said that, because with the busyness of life, running has taken a lower place on my list of priorities. In the past I loved to run. It was one of the few times I could get alone with my thoughts. He said his wife was a marathon runner and as he continued to talk about some of the reasons she enjoys running, it all resonated with me very loudly.
Here’s my spin on what he shared about the commonalities between a marathon and the race we call life. There are three main things to consider:
- The preparation. When you embark on any race, you must first get ready. Those who train (prepare) are bound to do better. For example, in a marathon you must be sure to be stretched and hydrated. Likewise, in life’s journey – you must take care of yourself. Nourish yourself physically, emotionally and spiritually and prepare for the road ahead.
- The focus. Don’t get distracted by looking at the mile ahead or the one behind. Focus on the mile you are on right now. “Tomorrow has enough troubles of its own.” (Matt. 6:34) Stay focused on where you are right now. This will keep you stronger in this moment. If you do this, you’ll have what you need for the next one.
- The reason you’re running. I hadn’t really thought of it this way before, but the guy sharing last night said, “A very small percentage of those competing in a marathon are doing it to actually win it.” He went on to say that most runners are there not necessarily to win, but just to finish.
I thought about the power of that statement. There is something extraordinarily gratifying about finishing what you started. Not only do you feel powerful, but it prepares you for the next goal.
Are you running a marathon now? If so, are you prepared, focused and sure of the reason you’re running it?