Wednesday, April 4, 2012


I was running not long ago, along a very hilly path.  Its amazing the analogies and life lessons that God shows to me while I am running.  I ran 8 miles this particular run, and it was a very hilly path I selected.  Hills are hard when you run, even if you slow down your pace, the amount of energy you use to climb the hill greatly increases.  Once you hit the peak, and start the slow decline, you body starts to move faster and works less.  Coasting down helps alleviate the strain you felt climbing the hill.  And that is when this miracle happens.  God has given us this amazing ability to forget.  When I run I forget the intensity of the hills, as I coast down the other side. I begin to recover.  And as I recover I rebuild strength to take on the next hill.  God helps us to forget.  We forget the intensity, the risk and the pain.

We had a heat wave hit Michigan in mid-March, and since I am training for a half marathon I took advantage of the gorgeous weather for a long run.  My task: 9 miles.  The weather: 80 and sunny.  I was completely ignorant as I left my house for my 9 mile run in the sun.  After 2 miles I was getting tired and took a walk break.  The walk breaks increased and by 4.5 miles I knew I couldn't complete this run.  I was in trouble.  It was HOT! I was sweaty, exhausted and almost out of water.  I was walking more than I was running.  My body just wasn't ready for this hot weather, and it wasn't able to exert the normal energy level it had under colder circumstances.  By 6.5 miles I felt I had nothing left to give and better stop.  I was concerned I may pass out if I continued to push myself. I refer to this run as the "death run".  It really was that bad.

But God helps us forget.  A few days later, with colder weather, and less sun, I set out again for a 9 mile run.  I had forgotten the pain. I had forgotten the impossibility I felt that day.  I forgot, and here I was willing to try it again.

I can't explain my experience of relationships, marriage and widowhood any better than this example.  My relationship with my husband was far from healthy.  Our marriage was less than perfect, and in the end horribly difficult and impossible.  I was hurt, taken advantage of, betrayed, and left crushed, broken and hopeless.  When he died I was left unresolved and confused.   It has been painful, and frustrating.   But as time passes, the impact of the pain I experienced lessens.  My memory of it fades.  Its almost as if it was a movie I watched, and not a life that I lived.  The emotions of it become more and more distant, and all that remains is the facts, the story which I tell.

I thank God that he helps us forget.  Who wants to carry the pain day after day, month after month, in the same intensity as which you first experienced it? What would life look like if we remembered every detail? I wouldn't take the risk to live life again.  I would live in fear.  I would never trust another man with my heart and my life, for fear he may destroy it.  But God helps us forget.  As we continue running down the path of life.  We face each new hill with a fresh perspective, a renewed energy.  We find joy in coasting down the other side. We don't let the "death runs" of life stop us from lacing up our shoes and setting out on new adventures.  We learn to enjoy life and live again!  All because God helps us forget.

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