Are you running?
I am training for a marathon right now and many things have been on my mind while I run:
One- when you run long distance it is way different from running shorter ones. You have to eat better, sleep better, take care of your feet better, have better shoes, and run more often.
Advice about marathons:
– Don't worry about making a time goal. Your focus should be on finishing.
– Don't go out too fast. It's very tempting to crank it up because you feel great and the adrenaline is rushing at the beginning of the marathon. Resist the impulse.
– Know the course. This means study it, and know where the elevation gains are, so you can plan your strategy accordingly. For example, all the hills in
New York are after the halfway mark.
– Do the long runs
– Wear what you'll be wearing during the marathon on long runs. Things that normally don't chafe at 5, or even 10 miles, begin to be a nuisance at over 20.
– Eat and drink what will be available at the marathon course during the long runs. You don't want to find that a gel upsets your stomach or a sport drink gives you severe crapititis during the marathon. Better to find this out during a long run than the actual event.
– Stay hydrated! One of my friends passed out at mile 24 of the NYCM.
– Your feet are going to take a lot of pounding. Make sure your shoes are in good shape and cushioned. The shoes you take on the long run should be the shoes you take on the marathon.
Now for the analogy:
Time- take one day, one opportunity, one step at a time. Don’t be in a rush with friendships. Don’t be hurried to share the gospel- be led by the Spirit.
Too fast of a start- How many Christians are on fire for God in the beginning only to dwindle (or fall out) in the end? Grow slow and steady and you’ll maintain the ground you’ve made.
Know the course- the only way to know what lies ahead of you is to seek God every morning FIRST THING. “Early will I seek Thee”
Long runs- this just simply means “Practice makes perfect”. Once in a while do something extraordinary with your faith. Don’t think that you’re limited to what you’ve done before… Lay hands on the sick. If you don’t see the manifestation- pray about that. Ask God if it was their faith or yours. “Get out of the boat!”
What are you wearing- so many people put on the full armor of God only when they feel the “need’. Hello? Are you on this planet. You need it DAILY! Don’t wait for a storm to come to try and find it. Put it on daily… then no matter what type of run you are running (trials and fire) you’ll be ready.
Feed yourself- Another activity people change when they find themselves in a storm or trial in life- they start engulfing themselves in the Word of God. Duh! You should be doing that daily as well. Don’t wait to NEED the Word. Put it in you so that when you need it It is there, in you.
Hydrated- “Come drink from the waters” Spend time with Jesus. Read about Him. Talk to Him. Pray in the Spirit, “building yourself up on your most holy faith” Some people ask “How much water should I be drinking?” Here is my advice: Take your body weight, divide by 2 and drink that many ounces a DAY. Well, if you are in the Lord, you need to be increasing your prayer time, fellowship time and Word time as you grow as well.
Your feet- You better have the right shoes on! Too many people are “shodding their feet with the preparation” of other people’s gospel. Get in the Word yourself. Ask God for a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him. Seek Him for yourself and don’t count other people’s word (including your Pastor) as Truth. Only the Word is Truth. Get it for yourself and walk in peace.
*We are all running a race (Hebrews 12:1) but not all are running the same event. You have Christians who get their life insurance and that’s it. (sprinters) Then you have those who go to church, pray once in a while and read their Bible on Sundays. (Milers) Then you have those we call “long distance runners”. They don’t stop after the mile. They keep going. One thing I love about running distance is the point where you get in the “zone”. If you’ve ever ran a couple miles then you know what I’m talking about. Your breathing is normal, you don’t think about running, you feel peaceful. This is true for spiritual long-distance runners as well.
There is a “rest” for God’s children but not all will enter it. (Hebrews 4:6- 11. We can enter into that place where things are in order, we know the Word, we hear God’s voice clearly, we are bearing fruit and have total peace….
So… are you stopping at the mile mark? Have you never “ran long-distance before”? It doesn’t matter what event you have been running- you can run a marathon if you train. Get on board and start training- there’s a race to be won!