Jul 142014
 

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.” Prov 3:5-6

Okay, so I was minding my own business on my typical 45 min training run. All beauty of God’s tree’s, birds singing, slight wind with a hint of sun surrounded me. And then it happened.

I heard a vehicle approaching and so I did my typical move over on the edge of the road as far as possible. As I am awkwardly running on half grass, half hard dirt and rocks, the loud roar of the engine seems right next to me. I turned to look and this monster truck zooms past like he was in a Nascar race. And he didn’t even have the courtesy to give a runner some space by moving over to the middle of the road. He sure nestled that white line right beside me. The nerve I tell ya!

But this was not the worst of it. Oh no. Not only was a freaked by the speed and proximity, because it was a gravel road, the air all around became dust. It was as if Tinkerbell had paid me a little visit. Except being able to fly was in no way part of the deal. Dirty dust literally filled all crevices in my body. I couldn’t see a thing in front of me, and I coughed to reject some of what I had already taken in. I was left in the dust. Literally.

Not fun. But as I took time to recover, I noticed my feet never stopped moving. In the mess of it all. Even when I couldn’t see where I was going. And I continued to rub my eyes to get the particles out. One foot went after the other. My feet kept doing what they knew to do in midst of this all consuming, unforeseen circumstance.

Similarly, as we venture into each day with God as our Shepherd to lead us, we are faced with “messy” situations. Troubles. Trials. Fears. And this circumstance or fear has surrounded us, as the dust surrounded me. Challenging and impacting our mind, heart, and spirit. We are left unable to see-What is in store for the future. The reason for it. How we are to continue on in freedom and peace.

But thankfully our feet know what to do. They keep moving one step at a time. Forward. In trust. In faith. In hope. In Jesus. When we are “left in the dust” by the world, we keep running with Jesus. We do not stop. Because we know He will get us through the dust cloud. We are never alone in it. And we can trust He will use it for good if we let Him.

Maybe you are in a troubling dust storm right now and you can’t see anything up ahead and you are overwhelmed. Cling to Jesus. He helps us when we don’t know which way to go. We do not have to be afraid. We do not have to live in anxiety. We do not have to go through trials alone.

May the God of peace settle us when the dust storms of life hit. May He strengthen us to continue moving forward in Him. May He clean us up in mind, heart and spirit, enabling us to bring Him glory and share our testimony. That He is faithful. Good. And provides for us in our times of need.

 

 

Jillian

Jillian

© 2012 Standing on Peace

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Jul 012014
 

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus” Hebrews 12:1-2a (ESV)

It’s been almost 3 weeks of running with Jesus. Three 30 min runs each week plus the “big run” (or the “too long” run as I like to call it). That adds up to 25 hours and 40 minutes of talk time.

That’s right. No I pod of music to listen to. No books on cd. No running buddy to chat with. It’s some serious quality time of viewing creation and talking with God.

I won’t say it’s been easy breezy. Because I was pretty sure I was going to pass out on the 10th hill of my “too long” 8 mile run. Felt the regret of doing too many calf raises on a cross training day. Laid down my pride and walked when my strength was gone. And have wondered countless times how I am going to really pull this marathon off in the end.

But God has been good to me. I love that in all my doubt. Fears. Weak parts. He gives strength. Peace. And purpose.

In one of our many conversations within the 25 plus hours I asked God, “What am I running for? I feel I am running in vain. Sure, it will be cool to say I have completed a marathon, but because You laid this on my heart, I believe there is more to be gained.” I thought of all the “Run to fight diabetes”, “Run for cancer research”, and the list goes on and on. People are running. Overcoming. And finishing with purpose. “I want to run with purpose.” I said. “And not just any purpose, but Your purpose.”

The phrase “Run fast” came to mind. It was definitely not the word fast having to do with speed (getting one foot in front of the other in a bouncing rhythm is about all I shoot for.) It was a biblical fast.

Go with me for a minute to understand this challenging word fast. Unger’s Bible Dictionary explains the word fast is from the Greek word nesteuo, meaning “to abstain.” Like in the book of Esther, the Jews were called to abstain from food and drink in a time of spiritual trial (Esther:4:16).

The Bible gives examples of God’s people combining fasting and prayer. King David wrote that he “humbled [him]self with fasting” (Psalm:35:13). This spiritual discipline was used and is still used to draw God’s children into deeper communion and committment to Him. It reminds us we are not self sufficient. We can be pulled to other earthly things to satisfy instead of the true source of life. Jesus.

Through the course of multiple 30 minute runs, this “Run fast” phrase was on repeat in my mind. This seemed to be God’s answer to my question, “What is my purpose for running?” I could run to “abstain from”_____, praying for the purpose of________.

I began to contemplate what I would be abstaining from: A conversation came to mind. A was talking with an acquaintance about how it is difficult to live as a mother without going into stressing, worrying mode. She said, “I know, but that is the reality of life. There is no way to live without worry and anxiety.” My heart sank. Mainly because I believe so many of us women can fall into this trap of anxiety, thinking there is no other way. But I trust God and His Word and the truth is that we do not have to live with anxiety. He desires different for His daughter’s.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Phil 4:6-7 (NIV)

I wanted to live differently than the “reality” of the world’s ways. As I run, I am praying through any area of anxiety that comes to mind. I am abstaining from anxiety/worry, for the purpose of gaining peace. I am on a Run Fast. I am praying for myself and all of my sister’s in Christ as I train for and run this marathon, that there would be a breakthrough of the bondage of worry.

Join me in a Run Fast as you train for a race this summer!  More details to come my friends.

 

Jillian

Jillian

© 2012 Standing on Peace

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