“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” Matthew 7:7-8
I thought after putting in 10 mile plus runs the first three miles would seem almost silly. Too easy. A walk in the park. (You get the drift.) And I was oh so wrong. Again.
I had been so proud of myself finishing a 10 mile run over the weekend, had taken a day off and was heading out the door to do a measly three mile run. Well, my over confidence was crushed quickly as I was huffing and puffing within the first 5 minutes. And this did not stop. For the rest of the run.
I questioned my technique. I blamed it on the hill. On my lack of sleep the night before. But after all my inner mind debating, I came to the reality. These first three miles were no different than any other time I had run three miles. Whether I do a 10 mile or a three or four mile run (soon to be 15, 16, 17-yikes!), those first three are always struggle.
But it is amazing how my body “gets in the zone” after three miles. I think my body just realizes, “Oh, I guess she truly is going to keep going. and going. and going. Might as well give in to it and stop fighting it.” My breathing smoothes out. My stride is steady. My mind has stopped playing the “How will I survive this” track and goes into a resting, prayerful track. All after three miles.
So I came to the realization that there is a pattern in my running-the first three kill me and after that is a “miraculous body rhythm of bliss”. And I have come to realization that there is a spiritual pattern that occurs as I follow Jesus.
Jesus says in His Word to “Ask, Seek and Knock”.
“Notice the three different senses being considered here. Asking is verbal; Christians are to use their mouths and petition God for their needs and desires. And believers are to seek with their minds—this is more than asking; it is a setting of priorities and a focusing of the heart. To knock involves physical movement, one in which the Christian takes action.” (www.gotquestions.org).
Mile One is like “The Ask”: It is about the heart- So difficult to get up the motivation to go on the run in the first place and also so difficult to get up the strength to go to God in prayer. This is a heart issue on both fronts. Requesting something from God means I am not in control. I have to lay down my pride. I have to rely on Him instead of my own abilities. I feel uncomfortable being needy. But I must do it. I must call out to God, for He IS my help.
Mile Two is like “The Seek”: It is about the mind-It seems I got past the worst of it, I got up the nerve to go and persevere for the first mile, I also humbled myself and asked God for help. But mile two poses new challenges. Mile two I feel as though I am not in shape due to my huffing and I am in a frustrated mental state. I also begin to experience warfare in my mind immediately as I begin to partake in the disciplines of being in His Word and being obedient to His Voice in my life. Not getting up early, for example, has recently been a pull from the enemy towards disobedience (or simply my own laziness to continue holding the comfort of my pillow). Mile two involves overcoming distractions, laziness, and opinions of others, while renewing the mind towards God’s Kingdom priorities.
Mile Three is like “The Knock”: It is about the body-Because I have fought the good fight, pushing through the mental and heart resistance of the first two miles, it seems this final rough mile three would not be too much of a challenge. But it is. Mile three is so close to being in the “over the hump” zone where my breathing evens out, my mind is at peace, but my body is still fighting for me to walk. Or stop completely. Spiritually, my body fights to only “talk the talk” about Jesus, but not actually “walk the walk”. I can’t quite get my legs to go over and talk to the stranger I feel an impressing to show God’s love to. I can’t seem to move beyond my normal schedule of laundry and parks to pick up the phone and see what meal I can bring to a Sister recovering from surgery. I can’t get off the couch to do the work of gaining more knowledge (in an area of weakness/discomfort ) about a particular group of people, activity, ministry God is calling me to. Mile three involves putting my feet to action. It asks the question, “Am I moving forward in Jesus, am I in a place of stretching, out of my comfort zone as I follow Him. What am I relying on Jesus for in this season?”
So get out there my friends, Ask, Seek, and Knock as you train and run your race of life. Because what is up ahead is good. I am anxious to hear how God is faithful to you personally. How He gave you what you asked. Helped you find what you were looking for. And opened wide doors of opportunity to bear fruit for the Kingdom, find joy in the day, hold peace in the now and experience freedom from your burdens.
© 2012 Standing on Peace