Yesterday, I ran 4 miles at a sub 8 minute pace. I was struggling. My house it at the top of a hill. No matter what direction that you go towards you are descending a hill. My finish is always UPHILL.
"Finish STRONG" has always rang in my ears. This mantra makes my new home finish a pain fest.
8 miles with Danielle was on my training schedule for today.
It only took 2 miles for me to feel uncomfortable. My first emotion was a physical one. I was HOT.
I don't mean I looked hot! I mean I felt HOT..Not a HOT mess, rather like physically roasting in a burning inferno! I way over dressed!
Uncomfortable didn't stop there. I blabbed for 3 miles about what a crap fest my week had been. Everyday presented a new form of hurt, heartbreak or a hang up I was struggling with. I had a whole lot of awesomeness too, however, the bad was really bad. It was like a dark cloud was following me around.
When I got done with my emotional vomit I said rather abruptly "OK! I am DONE!"
I then wiped the verbal garbage off my chin and moved on to enjoy my run with Danielle.
I enjoyed listening to Danielle and all the greatness she had this week. Her great moments became my great moments. When she looked at me and smiled with those high cheek bones I truly felt so happy.
The only problem with listening to her was I then heard something else. I heard my breathing! My heavy panting was reminding me how winded I was. How uncomfortable I was. How behind the gun I was.
I wanted to look at my watch to see if I had a reason to feel like such a weakling. But I was too scared that it would be worse than I thought.
I quietly reminded myself to feel the "yuck". I have to get reacquainted with shortness of breath, burning lungs, fatigue, sore and tired feeling in my legs. I have to learn to invite the Uncomfortable back into my life with the sole intention of knowing it is going to make me better.
Pain is part of the Process.
If you want to get stronger, faster, better you have to learn to push the limits of your mind and body. You have to send out invitations to Pain. Most of the time you have anxiety knowing you have made a date with Pain. The pain of a long run or a hard training run usually freaks me out days before.
However, the results show its purpose, leaving you feeling more confident and accomplished.
I have been reminded of this many times this week. There is Purpose in Pain. The pains of life are not always easy to invite. Often times we do not have to invite them, they come knocking all on their own.
2 Corinthians 12:9
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
I met a lady this afternoon for coffee. . As I was waiting for her to join me, I was writing this verse down to give to her.
It struck me that I needed this verse. This was what I was thinking this morning on my run. This aligned perfectly with me both in my running and in the experiences that I had trudged through this week.
God loves me when I am humble enough to admit "I am not Strong Enough". It is in my weakness He is Strong in me.
In my weakness, I call unto Him more. I need Him all the time but I really recognize my inadequacies more in my pain and broken state.
Sometimes, in our pain-filled state we can not see God delivering us because we quit right before He does something so incredible.
On my run, I had to endure just a little more. I had to listen to my uncomfortableness and watch God bring me to the finish in my pain. When I didn't want to go another step-let alone a few more miles, I just persevered knowing God already saw me at the Finish. It was MINE. In my uncomfortableness I had to persevere to the end.
God refines us in the furnace. Life if tough. Our struggles and hurts can consume us. They can become so real we lose the big picture. When we disconnect for the emotional hijacking of our problems and get comfortable in the uncomfortableness of pain we will see how God is doing a remarkable job at refining us.