Uphill, Downhill, and Flat Road

Soooo….I signed up to do the Frog Jog 5K for our YMCA.  I have been spinning, but not running.  When I signed up, I thought surely my endurance is  good enough to run this race.  Then last night, I started to doubt myself.  I even tried to talk myself out of it.  However, this morning the kids and Ricky were up and ready to cheer me on!  The kids even had a fun run after the race.  So, I went.

When I got there I was stretching and thinking harder about my goals for this race.  My first goal was to run the entire time.  When I say run, I mean more like jog as slow as I can without it counting as walking.  My second goal was to do it under 36 minutes.  I am happy to say that my first goal was accomplished!  I ran the whole time!!!  I was so proud of myself because there were definitely times I felt like walking, but I didn’t!  My second goal I came very close, but finished in 36 minutes and 54 seconds.  Close!!!  We won’t mention the mall walker that finished before me with a gimpy leg.  Hey, I said we wouldn’t mention her!!!

As I was running today, my mind wandered.  I prayed a lot throughout my run as I was listening to Ricky’s Ipod.  He has a little shuffle that I steal borrow from time to time.  My run today reminded me a lot of our journey in life.  I thought about the hills that felt like they would never end.  My legs burned and my breathing was labored.  Then the wind would kick up and try and push me back down the hill.  I just closed my eyes and pushed harder.  Then when I got to the top of each one, it was a victory!  I made it even though I thought I couldn’t do it. 

Then there were the downhill runs!  Oh, how I love to run downhill.  The Lord blesses us with the prize of getting to the easy part after the hard part is finished.  The wind was picking up from behind and giving me a little boost. 

Then there were stretches that were flat road that I felt like I could go on forever!  My speed picked up and the wind was nonexistent.  I could feel the sun shining on my face and all was good.

So, how does this relate to my life!  Well, this week was an uphill battle for me.  I could feel everything and anything trying to push me back down.  I struggled with making it through.  My mind was losing the battle just as my body was losing today.  But, no matter how much it hurt, I went on.  I pushed through.  I made it!  I’m just praying that this week the Lord will bless me with a downhill run because I so deserve it after this week =)  Just kidding!!!

The point is that life is full of hills!  You are going to have times when the hill seems neverending.  You can’t even see the top and you wonder what’s the point?  Why keep going?  It would be easier just to walk or stop altogether.  But friends, on the other side of every uphill battle is the downhill run!  It’s a blessing from the Lord for making it through each and every trial.  It may be a little blessing, but look for it!  My blessing today was seeing all three of those smiling faces as I rounded the corner for the finish line!  Cheering me on and letting me know how much they love and care for me! (We won’t mention the mall walker directly in front of me with the gimpy leg.  That might ruin the story!!)

There are also times in life when you are on flat road.  Everything is going great and all is right in your world!  It seems so easy to just keep going.  Enjoy those times!  Take in every moment.  You never know when a hill might come along.  I sure didn’t see the one we were about to run last August.  But those hills make you stronger.  It’s taken me awhile to figure that out, but they do!

The best part about this journey of uphill battles, downhill runs, and flat roads is that you are never alone.  Even when the battle seems never ending, He is always there.  Even when everything seems so difficult, He is holding your hand.  Sometimes that’s the hardest thing to remember.  God will test our faith but it’s only to make us stronger!

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything

James 1:2-4

Just as surely as He is with us when we are facing trials, He is also with us when we are running downhill.  He loves to bless us!  He loves to reward us for a job well done.

Thanks for listening to my ramblings today!  It’s amazing what the Lord can put in your head when you have 36 minutes and 54 seconds with no one but Him!

Blessings for a beautiful weekend!

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PS  Round 5 of chemo is officially done!!!!  7 more to go!!!

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