I never really wanted to do it. It wasn’t a lifelong dream. Yet I did it—and I’m not doing it again. Why? Because it absolutely hurts to run 26.2 miles.
If I had the body, speed, or mental fortitude of a Kenyan, I might have enjoyed it more. Still, I ran, because at the time it was my only opportunity for exercise. As I ran, I also used that as my devotion time. On one three-hour run, I listened to six sermons in a row. As a mom with young kids, it was nearly miraculous to hear one sermon, let alone six!
Those runs are when I started to think more about the passages that referred to exercise: “Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come” (1 Timothy 4:7).
My running was of some value. My heart got strong, and so did my legs. I was training myself to run long distances. But the training in godliness was even better. I left for most runs a little tired and a little discouraged, with the heaviness of this world on my heart. After being filled with God’s Word and having some time to pray, I came home refreshed—a better wife, a better mother, closer to my God.
I knew I was never going to get the prize in my earthly marathon, but my training in godliness reminded me that I have a heavenly medal—an inheritance stored up for me in heaven that can never perish, spoil, or fade.
How’s your training going?