The Visitor

As I was doing my daily miles along the local Walden Lakes trail ( neat place! A pleasant two mile paved loop with just enough inclines to add a little extra effort, that has many trees for shade and the trail wines along Walden Lake and beautiful homes now and then) I ‘ran into’ someone from my past.
This person is not a friend or could ever be one -but I will have to admit that I have grown a better person because of the pain in my physical life, as well as the emotional and spiritual challenges that have come and gone in my life because of ‘this someone’.
Let me clear up why I use the word ‘someone’. I do have a nickname that may serve as a ‘visual’ for you as I share this little story ~ you probably even have come across him while doing your training runs or at a race: PAIN. And that he is and more!
I never know for sure when he will ‘strike up’ a conversation. He is very rude that way. I could be alone or running with friends – in the midst of a race or even just before I even take my first step. He has been that way for most of my past ten years of running. He is faithful in the sense that he never missed one of my marathons( 64 to date) – and I’ll add that he has been ( though not always at his best) somewhere ‘only a step away’ during my 24,000 logged miles!
He reminds me of Satan. Really! Satan shows up when I am full of energy and when I am tired. Days when I feel ‘on the top of the world’ with praise in my heart for my Lord – BAM! – words of conviction of my past sins, backsliding days, mistakes made with my boys and daughter, and yes – with their mother. He sure knows how to darken the brightest day – times of praise and worship as i run my miles with my i-pod playing great spiritual songs! The only good in him is that he is good at that.
BUT – here is the ‘GOOD NEWS! I tell Mr. Pain the same thing that I remind Satan: “I am a ‘child of the King’! I’m washed in the ‘blood of the Lamb! I am heading towards the final heavenly finish line – step by step . Some days I will do my miles with ease, other times I may be tripped up with ‘his inconvenience’ – but always moving forward.
Let me close with this wonderful scriptural comfort to help you ‘press forward’ in any and all situations along this course called life.
“So now, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith in his promises, we can have real peace with him because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us…..We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials for we know that they are good for us – they help us learn to be patient. And patience develops strength of character in us and helps us trust God more each time we use it until finally our hope and faith are strong and steady.”
Now read this addition great news!
“Then, when this happens, we are able to hold our heads high no matter what happens and know that all is well, for we know how dearly God loves us, and we feel this warm love everywhere within us because God has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.” (LBV ~ Romans 5:1; 3-5)
Happy running!