I always admire those who complete a commitment in their lives. A great example took place recently. This past weekend three people from New Life, the church I attend, ran a half marathon. David Campbell, Corey Dugan, and Kristi Bakken finished what they started out to do. Congratulations on a job well done.
It takes determination and commitment to run a half marathon. Day after day of continual running throughout the winter and early spring. You are running when you feel like it and running when you don’t. Sometimes you want to quit. It takes perseverance.
Today I want to be like Paul Harvey and tell the “rest of the story” behind the 13.1-mile run that took place last Saturday. David ran the half marathon last year. He talked it up with Corey and they decided that they would run it together this year. So they began to train. They set up a running schedule and the training began. They had a goal and they were doing it together.
The day of the big race came with all of its excitement. The adrenaline began to flow. David and Corey took off at a great pace. They ran the first seven miles at a 8.5-minute pace. About that time Corey’s legs began to feel like bricks and he had to slow down, but he kept running. Corey told David to keep going and not be hampered by him. David refused and slowed down to run with Corey.
As they crossed the finish line side by side Corey’s foot crossed the line one second ahead of David. Technically Corey beat David in the race. Corey wants everyone to know that David purposefully slowed down to run with him. David was quick to state, “We started this race together and we finished it together!” He could have easily finished the race under two hours, but he said, “That is not what this is about.”
I would like to make a few parallels to this story to the race that we are running as followers of Christ. Here are a few:
- We are all in this race together.
- It doesn’t matter who comes in first as long as we all finish.
- There are times in our race that things are going to be difficult and slow us down, but we must persevere. We are in this race for the long haul.
- We must keep a lookout for those who experiencing difficulties and “slow down” and run beside them.
- It is not about our personal attainments. If we win at another person’s expense, do we truly win?
- The values of this world are not kingdom values. People are more important than temporary fame.
- Running the race together is better than running the race alone.
- If you keep running, you will cross the finish line. Wahoo!
Take a moment or two to think. Is there anyone I can encourage today? Is there anyone who needs me to “slow down” from my regular schedule so I can run alongside for a moment?