Real Help for Real Living: I returned to running the streets. It wasn’t pretty.

Anthony MarcianoWhen I was in high school, I ran cross country.  Imagine this non-athlete running 10 miles every day in practice.  I stopped running when I graduated. When I came to Charlotte 21 years ago, I went running each evening.  When the family joined me three months later, the running stopped.  Shortly after that, I joined the Dowd Y.  I didn’t work out hard; I strolled along on the treadmill.  Group classes were for others.  Nautilus machines were there to keep the carpet in place.  Yes, I worked out or should I say, I showed up at the Y.

A few years ago, I attended one F3 workout.  I stayed 20 minutes and decided to leave.  I headed back to the Dowd Y where it was safe and life was predictable.

A short time ago I found an F3 group for people that are older. That sounded good to me.  I arrived at the park but no one showed up.  After waiting 10 minutes, I decided to run. While running, I discovered a small track.  It wasn’t the quarter mile track I ran on in high school.  It was smaller; much smaller.  I ran a third around the track and had to stop.  The next day I returned and ran three quarters around the track.  On the third day, I ran completely around the track.  I felt like Rocky Balboa running up the steps in Rocky I.  I was ecstatic.

I learned something that day while I was running.  I thought I was in shape.  I wasn’t.  It changed how I exercise.

As I did with exercise, we can do the same with life.  We can reach a point of equilibrium and maintain it.  We become satisfied with where we are and are satisfied.  What if there is more?

Can we do the same thing with our walk with God.  We go to church, participate in a Bible study and serve a meal at the Rescue Mission.  What if God wants us to go deeper.  What if He want us to pursue him the same way those men were pursuing being in shape when I walked out of the F3 workout.

There is a scripture verse that says, “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.”

God has a calling on your life that goes beyond having a good job, paying the mortgage and getting your kids into a good college.  What will you be remembered for when you are gone?  How will you make this world a better place?  How will you make His love real to those who feel they are beyond His grace, mercy and forgiveness?

Is God calling you to push out into the deep waters, to do something you have never done?  Is he asking you to go deeper with Him that you can be a light to this world?  Is he pushing you out of your comfort zone?

I’m still not ready for the F3 workout. However, I am in a class at the Dowd Y at 6am on Monday.  Come join me.  I’m the guy who is still out of shape but not willing to let that hold him back.