To celebrate my birthday I signed up for a 5K in Niagara Falls. 25 years ago I took my first breath and as I did, doctors were busy telling my parents that I wouldn’t take very many more. I was too small and my lungs were too fragile. Today many of my favorite things to do (run, sing, etc.) all take incredible lung power. Every time I stop and think about it, it amazes me.
I’ve learned a lot of things about life and faith while running. Today was no exception. The first God Sighting of the day was that my bib number “just happened” to be number 25. How fitting. But there were three other neat ways in which I saw God today:
1. Not even a half mile into the race I saw a dad running with his son that couldn’t have been more that 5-6 years old. The son was already starting to lag behind. You could tell from what the dad was saying they had prepared for this and that the father knew the son could keep up with the pace the dad was setting. After about a minute of encouraging and prompting, the dad simply said, “Here, grab my hand” and they continued on together, hand in hand.
Isn’t that like our Heavenly Daddy? He knows what we can do even when we’re a little scared and overwhelmed and wondering if we can do it. He encourages. He prompts. And when we need it the most, He reminds us that we can always just grab onto His hand. He’s not going to leave us behind. He’s not going to get mad, He’s going to do whatever it takes to get us to the finish line.
2. The past couple of weeks I have been overwhelmed by reminders of how blessed I am, especially with relationships and “family” here in New York. All I can say is there can’t be anything much more encouraging than your 2 adorable preschool neighbors standing on the side of the road with their awesome parents cheering “Go Bekah, Go! You can do it!” and greeting you at the finish lines with big hugs!
3. The third story is somewhat similar to the first. About a half mile into the race I set pace behind an older gentleman. From what I could tell, it seemed that he was running just about the pace I wanted to be running in order to get a decent time. Early on I made it my goal to stick with him and finish with him at least in sight. (Which I did!) So for a good 2 miles of the race I remained just a few steps behind. Around the 1 mile mark I began to realize how awesome this man was. First of all, he thanked ever police officer or volunteer we passed that was standing on the side of the road directing traffic and keeping us safe. But, then, I was surprised and thankful when he began pointing out all the potholes or rough spots in the road. It was often, but I could be sure that as long as I was following behind this gentleman, nothing was going to come as a surprise along the path.
Once again, I see God in this. He’s running a pace that may push me at times, but is never too much. As I keep my eyes and focus on Him, he runs along with me pointing out all the places where I could easily trip and get hurt. Sometimes the road gets steep and it’s a LONG UPHILL CLIMB and other times I’m just relaxing into a long stride for the downhills, but no matter what the road brings, our God is faithful to lead and guide and protect.