Filed under: Activate, Culture, Faith and Faith Life, Home Life, Politics, Random, Running, Uncategorized
I am woefully aware this morning that I have recently been, uh, negligent as regards daily quiet time to breathe in Scripture and live it out.
Not that I’ve been totally dismissive of spiritual food… I mean, we attend church (most weeks). I download the sermon podcasts from weeks we miss, and faithfully listen while running. I engage in many theological and spiritual discussions throughout the week.
And I swear, I really do love Jesus!
But I am negligent, none the less.
Case in point, number one: Last night, my Facebooking was interrupted by a message from a dear friend encouraging me to read, soak in, and be encouraged by Psalm 107.
So I googled ‘Psalm 107,’ was redirected to BibleGateway.com, and, upon seeing how dreadedly long that stupid Psalm is, I skimmed it, thought to myself, “awww…,” and immediately returned to scouring my Facebook feed for offensive political posts to which I could respond with appropriate self-righteous anger and dismay.
Case in point, number two: Late last week, I was invited by email to join a “Scripture Encouragement Exchange.” It’s like one of those book exchanges where you invite six people, and each of you sends a book to the person at the top of the list (and that person ends up with like 300 books), and then you add your name to the number two slot and forward it on.
Only with this, it’s as simple as sending an encouraging verse to a stranger.
Guess who’s procrastinating, because she “just can’t think of six people to invite.”
I know, I know.
Please line up to punch me in the face. One at a time.
And then, once you’ve punched me, please help:
Send me your suggestions for a good, in depth daily devotional or study of some sort. Your favorite devotional…or Bible Reading guide…whatever.
And keep me accountable.
Because I firmly believe and trust that, “As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” (Isaiah 55:10-11)
But I’ve got to let Him plant the seeds and water them if I’m to enjoy any growth…
Because it’s the end of the year, and because everyone who’s anyone who has nothing better to do does this…I’ve decided to make a Top Ten of TwentyTen list for your perusal and enjoyment.
So here goes.
10. I ran 25 miles in my longest training run to date, while training for my first ever 50k ultra marathon. It took me 5 hours and 20 minutes, but I did it, and it was amazing.
9. I enjoyed traveling to countless cities – for free! – with Husband, thanks to his job which affords him this amazing perk of frequent flier miles which added up to a free one-year companion pass for me. Which means I can go anywhere with him, anytime, for nothin’. Go Southwest!
8. I’ve had the privilege of spending many days with some of the most incredible kids in the universe on a near-ongoing basis, some of whom are pictured here:
(This is Rebekah, my best friends’ oldest daughter, almost 4yo)
(And here’s Abigal, Rebekah’s sister, who is every drop of two years old.)
(The big kid would be Matt, my 14yo stepson, who occasionally tags along to help me babysit…and read to the young’ns…who LOVE him.)
7. I ran and finished my first ever trail race, covering nearly 12 miles and climbing upwards of 3,000 in elevation, at Chattanooga’s Stump Jump (I was supposed to run that 50k race I mentioned training for in #10, but alas, my #1 thing of 2010 kind of hampered that):
6. I ate some *amazing* food in some amazing cities, including but not limited to:
^^This incredible – and I mean incredible – hot dog at an Anaheim Angels game in California.
^^…as well as this unbelievable lobster in New York City.
^^…and this Green Curry in Alexandria, VA.
^^…and (finally) this unspeakably delicious bbq smorgasbord in Black Mountain, NC.
(It goes without saying – but I’ll say it anyway – that I did NOT eat to run, this year, but rather ran to eat!)
5. I enjoyed a rather intoxicating anniversary weekend away in …wait for it… Washington, DC with my Love:
(That’s the Lincoln Memorial from across the Reflection Pool.)
(And that’s Love and me in front of Lincoln…)
4. I somehow, through no fault or success of my own, managed to write one of my personal favorite songs to date, “Stronger Than You Think,” which has become a bit of a quiet anthem for myself and many I’ve had the privilege of getting to know:
3. I traveled to a LOT of states across the whole country on tour, running through and/or simply enjoying the sights of some incredible cities along the way, like these:
Seattle, WA…(the view from my hotel room balcony)…
….Greensboro, NC (the view from a 6 mile lakeside trail run)…
…Times Square in New York City (where I rather enjoyed looking grumpy for a moment, who knows why?)…
…The gorgeous shores of Long Island (NY)…
…and the Harvard University Campus in Cambridge, MA.
2. I spent over two months touring with two of my musical heroes, Jennifer Knapp and Derek Webb, during which time I literally shared the stage (and a van) with them, sang songs with them, ate food with them, made jokes with them, and took pictures with other super famous cats like these guys (they’re called “Hanson”):
the number one thing I did in 2010….
1) I MADE A BABY!! (With the help of Husband, of course!) He’s currently 23 weeks baked in my uterus for an oven, and due on April 27, 2011. He will, no doubt, be number one on next year’s Top Ten list as well!
Filed under: Running
Last night, I enjoyed (if you can use that word in this context) one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I shall share it in question form. (Feel free to check “yes” or “no” next to each question.)
HAVE YOU EVER:
> Run 14 miles on an unfamiliar mountain trail with one coach and four strangers?
> Gotten stupid-sick and had to stop for a deep woods runner’s dookie just off an unfamiliar mountain trail?
> Run in the dark by head-lamp light only, fallen down twice, and stripped your knees raw on a UMT?
> Learned, over the course of a 4.5 hour run, that you are a super over-sweater and thus prone to dehydration?
> In an effort to be ‘one of the runners,’ failed to consume an appropriate amount of electrolytes, calories, and water…making you dehydrated and facing electrolyte-absence-induced paralysis?
> Needed to stop for a second bathroom break only to be attacked, mid-potty-search, with crushing calf cramps so debilitating your coach had to race to your side, hold down your leg to relieve the cramp, and carry you up the hill?
> While listening to coach explain why it’s best to try not to vomit, proceeded to do so, projectile-style, while he stands by laughing uproariously at the grand perfection of it all?
> Realized after the fact that the leftover Thai food (which also happened to make you similarly sick earlier that same morning) was probably the primary culprit and enemy, but that in the course of four hours, you have suffered every. single. runner’s ultimate nightmare…on the same night….for the first time in your life (on all counts, from dark night run to dookie in the woods to falling twice mid-stride to vomiting en route)…
…On your first unfamiliar moutain trail run with one coach and four strangers.
Welcome to my evening, Friends!
In truth, I’m grateful it was everything at once on such a vulnerable run. I made four new friends who cheered me on despite the insanity; bonded with coach; and learned some incredible lessons about my body, its needs, and its limits, and that even so, I am able to finish. Maybe not strong, but certainly with my hands in the air, a shrug on my shoulders, and a huge smile on my face at its utter absurdity, and the entertainment it undoubtedly provides for others.
Last night, I more than survived: I lived.
I am a runner.