Sunday, November 20, 2011

Motivation from the Mighty Man

I am so fantastically proud of my Mighty Man today! :) In an act of unbelievable strength and courage, he ran his first half marathon without walking a single step. It was a goal he'd had since the beginning of the year, and he completed it today on one of the most dispicable courses in the area and in the November cold. Way to go, Mighty Man. I'm so proud of such a strong warrior.

I can hear the "gag me's" now. haha! Don't care! I love him!! And not just because he ran today (my sport of choice), but because he did something he said he would do even though it was hard. That takes discipline and integrity.

It reminds me of another story he has from his childhood. He recalls jumping from a tall tree limp into a pond because he promised a girl he would. (Of course he was trying to impress her. He's quite the charmer.) :) But, he almost didn't. He was pretty confident on the ground, but when he got up to the limb itself and realized how high it was, he climbed right back down.

Eventually, he dad got wind of this, though, and instructed his son to be a man of his word. He had to make good on his promise. And so he did.

I'm sure the little Mighty Man was terrified, but his word was important. And I'm so thankful to his dad for teaching him that important lesson. It goes straight back to Scripture and the many times that God instructs us to keep our words. Over and over He tells us and others in the Bible to keep our vows and to, like the Mighty Man preached a week ago, let our "yes" be "yes" and our "no" be "no." That's in Matthew from the Sermon on the Mount.

But it's a sad reality that our world isn't very familiar with the concept of following through. We see it all the time. People just give up when things get hard. Especially in relationships, right? We've gotten so used to relationships breaking apart that we have started to believe that they're disposable.

My Momsy and I had this conversation a while ago. We have a similar fear of people abandoning us when emotions get flared. It's what we've seen. It's what we learned. People walk away when there's a fight.

And we are NOT the only ones who have this issue. Because it's true! This is how many relationships end up today. People just choose to leave instead of sticking together and working through tough patches.

But this is where we, as Christians, have a chance to show the world something different. In the power of the Holy Spirit, we CAN stick with a relationship no matter how hard it gets. It's the supernatural love and grace that He gives us. When we choose to accept it and give it to others, we can fight, argue, weep and wail and not have to worry about whether or not the relationship will end. If both parties are committed, through the Lord, to seeing it through, there's no abandoning. Even if it is absolutely horrible for days, weeks, months, whatever. There's a shared supernatural ability to stick with it until it's resolved.

Why? Because we understand the grace and love that we ourselves have been given through Christ and that we are shared holders of that same love and grace. Jesus died for us even though we were/are guilty, sin-stained and broken. But He loved us so much that He paid the price for us so that we could be forgiven, saved and free. And when we receive Him as our Lord, we become recipients of the Holy Spirit, who enables us to love like He did. Forgive like He did. And in that power, no relationship is doomed.

Today, I'm thanking God for the perseverance of my Mighty Man and for the hard-earned sweaty salt he earned that covered his face. It was tough, but he did it. He stayed with something that was challenging and made good on his commitment. And Jesus did the same thing. He stayed with it until He had been crucified and risen again so that God's Word could be fulfilled and His children restored.

Thank You, Jesus. May we all follow Your example of perseverance and commitment. May we learn to ditch the concept of abandonment and to walk forward in the freedom of Your love and be willing to share that with others. No matter how hard it gets.

Oh! And, yes, I did run too. haha! It was not one of my PRs. I will NOT mince words. I hate this course. But it wasn't bad at all. It was a great long run with 2,300 of my fellow runners who all experienced the same thing. And, lo and behold! I did get 2nd in my age group. I guess we all felt it a little today. :)

Enjoy your Sunday!
- Jill

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