June 2019   
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Training for the Race of Life.....Day 19 (Long Run Day)


Training for the Race of Life…….Day 19 (Long Run Day)
- I attempted something today that I had never done before, and that was to run 10 miles.  I completed the task but it took me almost 2 hours to do so.  At one point I probably was “running” slower than some people walk.  Still yet the feeling at the end was one of exhilaration and absolute tiredness.  While I was making lap after lap at the park, an older man who was walking turned to look at me, and the look on his face was priceless.  It was obvious what he was thinking, “son are you ever going to stop”.  If I could have talked at that point I probably would have told him, “I definitely feel like it.”  But I knew if I stopped I wouldn’t get restarted. 
 I couldn’t help but think while I was running again of the obvious parallels between running and life and one of them is perseverance.  Sometimes you have to make yourself persevere during a run and sometimes on a much more serious level you have to make yourself persevere in life.  Face it life can be hard.  It can be crushing in fact, but still we must persevere. 
 As I ran I thought of some people that I’m close too and some of the things that they are going through and my heart hurt for them.  The question that all of us should ask is “how can we help people who are struggling?” Or another way to put it would be, “what can I do to help?”  We can certainly pray for one another can’t we?  In fact the Bible makes it clear, “pray for one another”.  We can lift one another up before the Lord, we can stand in the gap so to speak. 
 We can also take time just to be with people who are hurting, or take time to listen to them, or take time to do something special for them.  One of the things that we can do is find ways to encourage them.  Paul says, “you have been comforted (with God’s grace) now go and comfort other people.”  We ought to be intentionally and deliberately searching for things that we can do to comfort and encourage other people.  Who knows if we do so our actions might just be what the other person needs to persevere through their difficulties. 
 What if that man would have encouraged me as I ran instead of looking at me like I was crazy?  What if he would have said “good job” or “keep going” or “you can do it.”  I don’t know what difference it would have made, but it would have made a difference.  Encouragement always does.  Maybe I would have finished the 10 miles in an hour and 45 minutes. 
 Find ways to encourage people this week.  Love them, pray for them, and keep running with Jesus.