Thursday, December 4, 2008

Are you ready?

I have decided not to run in the St. Jude Half Marathon Saturday. It was a tough decision. But, at the same time, it wasn't a tough decision. It kind of played out like this....

I trained for five months for the Rock 'N Roll marathon which was in June. (In case you missed that story, there's another whole blog to tell you all about it.) The marathon was super tough on my body and took quite a while for me to recover from it. But I did it and it remains the absolute highlight of my year! I was diagnosed with the stress fracture in July. Which kept me off the treadmill for twelve weeks. I decided in October that I felt well enough to start training again and wanted to attempt the St. Jude Half. However, I didn't pick my training back up at the level that I had been doing. I had really done some major training for the full marathon. Daily training. And I worked so hard and so long to get to that level of conditioning. Then in just a short period of time, I lost it. It just went away so quickly. And I just never really attempted to get it back. Basically it was a "use it or lose it" situation.

Now, don't get me wrong, I wasn't this ultra super runner athlete person. I'm soooo not that and never was. But logging in over 250 miles in five months and completing a marathon has to amount to something doesn't it? And I went from that level of activity, to absolutely nothing while I recovered from the stress fracture, to now just a mile or two every day. It just ain't the same, people.

So, to do the half this weekend would really not be smart. I just can't take part in the race without having prepared for it. I haven't put in the work and miles and effort and training that I need to successfully complete the race. I am unprepared.

It got me to thinking that it's kind of like our life. We all have challenges and tests that are thrown at us. And unless we are training and preparing on a regular, daily basis, we are not able to face these things appropriately. We are left to face these challenges completely unprepared. This could be spiritual tests, relationship challenges, work problems, parenting frustrations - just any of life's storms. It's important to read and study the Bible, to develop deeper relationships, to work daily on our thoughts and attitudes. We need to be prepared and trained to handle challenges before we are faced with them.

"Be prepared in season, out of season." 2 Timothy 4:2

How can we have deep, true, meaningful and loving relationships without working on them every single day?

How can we face a spiritual crisis or a challenge without having the knowledge of God's word?

How can we fully develop our gifts and talents without practicing these skills regularly?

All of these situations in life - "the big races" - need lots and lots of work. Every single day. If not, we will find ourselves at the starting line completely unprepared.

What races are you facing in life? Have you prepared for them? Are you ready?

0 Wanna' ramble too?: