Way back in the 1998 I got this bright idea to run a marathon, in London. Truthfully, I’d always wanted to go to London and the marathon was my excuse. Why on earth I didn’t just say “hey, I’m going to London for a visit” is beyond me.
My older brother said “there’s no way you can run a marathon, you’re not a runner”. Yeah, well that was all it took for me to determine I WOULD do it, even if it killed me. I trained really hard for roughly 9 months. I dropped 40 pounds. I was in the best shape of my life. I damaged my right knee, but kept right on training.
April of 1999 found me standing in a pack of 40,000 or so strangers waiting to do the hardest thing I’d ever done up until that point in my life. Even though I’d trained hard, I still wasn’t really a runner, not a fast one anyway. The fast runners were done in a few hours. Me, not so much.
Somewhere around mile 20 or so I was done. My knee was screaming, my mind was screaming and all I could think was “My brother was right, I can’t run a marathon.” I stopped moving and just stood there, in the middle of the street in a little neighborhood in London, watching the pack move on without me.
Then this little British angel of a lady came out of her house. She walked over to me, and handed me a thick slab of bread with an inch thick chunk of cheese on it. Or maybe it was butter, I couldn’t tell, but I was grateful to get it. She handed me a bottle of water to wash it down and then a handful of chocolates. Then she patted me on the shoulder and in her thick British accent said “Keep moving. Even if you have to walk, just keep moving forward. You CAN finish.”
I hope I had the presence of mind to thank her. My body again lurched forward and I caught sight of the pack, WAY ahead of me. For the next 6.2 miles I kept hearing her over and over again “Keep moving forward. You CAN finish.” Oh how I wish she’d been there as I crossed the finish line, for without her and those few simple words of encouragement, I would never have finished my race.
Life is like a marathon (as I get all “Forrest Gump” on you). It’s hard. Sometimes you think you just can’t keep going. Sometimes you need is a bit of encouragement from friends, family and even strangers with funny accents bearing gifts of chocolate.
So today, hear me. You CAN make it. What ever you are facing, you can make overcome it! Why? Because God’s Word says so, Philippians 4:13 “I can do ALL things through Christ which strengthens me.” Did you know that Christ isn’t Jesus’ last name? That’s right, it means the anointed one and/or the anointing. The anointing is God’s burden removing, yoke destroying power of God, operating in YOU!
You CAN do all things, through the burden removing, yoke destroying power of God that’s in YOU! Just keep moving forward!
By the way, that pretty lady up there running, that’s not me. That’s my friend Patty running the Marine Corps marathon in 2013. Now she’s training for the NYC Marathon….she just keeps moving forward!
Need a little more (in)couragement this morning? Check out The Power of Encouragement.