I am going to do a series called Cloudsplitter Confessions.
I am still not running therefore it gives me more time to write.
2 Chronicles 15:7
"But you, be strong and do not lose courage, for there is reward for your work."
I am a pipsqueak. There really is not much to me. I am 5''2 and a 103 lbs on a good day. I am not athletic, I don't look tough and I don't really even act tough. I have the personality that most people don't even take me serious.
But there is something that burns inside of me. Its a flame that makes my heart palpitate. I can feel myself sweat, my blood pressure raise. I don't play nice. I play hard, I am out for blood. I may not win, but I will fight like Hell to give my all when I put my mind to it.
Darkness had encompassed the mountain. The air was wet as the fog rolled in. David kept looking behind to see how far I was. Andy seemed to be bonding well with David as I fell back alone in the night.
I wanted to be on their "Heels", close to them, part of their conversation. I also wanting to curl up and die. I had been on this mountain for almost 15 hours. I had never trained more that 8 hours on my feet.
I was haunted with David's vivid recollection of what was still to come. I was hoping because I couldn't remember this area of Hell I was about come upon that it didn't exist. "Anita, I am pretty sure we have a really steep hill to get up, remember?..."
"Remember?" God NO! I couldn't remember anything. I couldn't think clearly. I didn't know if I was coming or going. I couldn't think about going UP a really steep part of this mountain again. I thought we were supposed to being going DOWN the mountain? I didn't think my legs could possible go UP anymore. I was really hoping David was wrong.
You couldn't see your hands in front of your face it was so black out. We had head lamps but they were not working well in the fog.
Maybe it was better I never saw it coming.
Maybe it was better that I had trailed so far behind Andy and David.
Maybe it was better that it was so dark out, so they couldn't see how pathetic I was.
Humiliated up the Hill
I seriously struggle to write this next portion. I was so broken.
"Anita, I am so proud of you, you can do this." Andy had repeatedly spoke these encouraging words to me as I struggled getting 2.5 miles an hour through the trail. I wanted to go faster, I wanted to be stronger, I wanted to just have the energy to respond, but I was vacant of all of that.
I heard them say something but I was too far back. I could only see about 5 feet in front of myself. THAT incline that David spoke of came out of nowhere. She presented herself like my worst enemy. She ascended straight up wrapped in Rhododendron. The trail was very narrow topped with loose rocks and dirt. The dew had settled, coating the trail with moisture making every step futile.
I started out defeated by the sheer vision of Her.
"Anita, You got this, use your stick." Andy yelled just a few feet ahead of me.
For every step forward I made, I felt like I lost 2 feet back down. My feet slipped, my stick wouldn't drive into the rocks and my weak legs were useless. I couldn't reach Andy. I fell and stumbled. Tears came to my eyes as I scraped my hands in the dirt.
"NITA, GRAB MY HAND." Andy pleaded.
His hand was so close but I couldn't reach it. I was on all fours.
"I CAN'T, I CAN'T." I cried.
The dirt was in my nails, the sharp rocks were tearing my knees apart. I wasn't going anywhere. My body was not responding. I couldn't get up this hill.
Andy begged me "Anita, use your stick, grab my hand..."
I looked up and could see David behind Andy. They both looked so strong. I felt like a failure. I was so weak. I was scared.
No, I was broken. I was going to get up the hill. If I had to crawl. And that is exactly what I had to do. "NO ANDY, I WILL GET UP, Just let ME CRAWL." I screamed at him. Determined.
I was so humiliated. Crawling on all fours with tears in my eyes. But I was going to get up by myself. I didn't want help. I wanted to do it by myself. No matter what it took I felt like the only one that was going to get me up that Horrific incline was GOD. I felt like God put me on my knees.
No MATTER WHAT I was going to do it. My Pride was stripped away from me. I had nothing left but pure GRIT.
Whatever it took I would not quit, I would not give up or give in.
So I continued to crawl. I thought I would never get to the top. I overheard David "Sometimes you are better just crawling."
I was out of breath and mortified by the vision of how pathetic I must have looked like. It took every fiber to get up. Everything was failing, my mind, my body and even my faith. Yes, for a moment I felt the darkness even fill my heart. As I crawled, I begged God to help me. To give me strength to climb up to David and Andy. I couldn't hear him, I couldn't feel him. It scared me. I was so cold and alone in my fears.
I just kept crawling. I never quit.
I am not sure when I got to the top. I can't remember that moment. I can't remember feeling victorious. I just remember crawling. I will never forget that crawl. It did something to me. It took me to the lowest place, a dark place.
I will Never Forget it.
I have thought about that crawl so many times. It still brings tears to my eyes. It was a very POWERFUL experience in a very POWERLESS way.
Collision: Life will present some dark moments in our life. We will struggle to find and stay on the path. It is so difficult to try to see where to go when you can barely see from one moment to the other. We have been in that season of life where it takes all our energy to just move forward. We can not handle another obstacle, we feel fragile, broken, beat up. Then, when we think it just cannot get any worse, it does.
Do YOU QUIT without trying?
Are you Defeated easily?
Or Are you that one that doesn't care what it takes, you will GRIT it out. Come Hell or High water, no matter how UGLY it gets you will NOT QUIT.
“You must pay for everything in this world one way and another. There is nothing free except the Grace of God. You cannot earn that or deserve it.”
― Charles Portis,
― Charles Portis,