Let's take it slow

We were getting ready to do our long run this morning when the sun had not yet come up, I was telling everyone how glad I was I got a head lamp in my stocking for Christmas so it could light my path on mornings like today when we decided to run when it's 14 degrees, and it's pitch black out on the trail. What can I say, runners are nuts.

Someone, whose name I should have known because we have been in the same running group for a year, mentioned how creepy it was to run by herself on the trail last weekend without a lamp, so I said "I'll run with you" to which she replied " Oh, I don't think I can keep up your pace". This is probably a good time for me to mention that I am not a 6 minute mile runner, but in the group we learn to team up with people whose pace resembles ours, we buddy up and encourage each other to give a little more, run a little faster, go the extra mile - pun intended.  So I told her we would take it easy and off we went.

We did not run fast by anyone's standards, we even stopped a few times to walk, but in taking the time to slow down I learned her name, that she is running to honor her sister who passed away, that she has three kids, and is throughly dedicating herself to be better this year.

If you read {{my last blog post}} then you know that my word for this year is selah, and that I am consciously trying to remain in God's love, which right off the bat is proving to be difficult because I am going through a TOUGH time right now and my modus operandi is to busy myself trying to do and fix, to run faster so I can hurry up the pain, to get this season over with. Yet I am called to stay, to feel, to remain in the One without whom I cannot accomplish anything. 

To me it feels like slowing down is losing ground, but it has been pointed out to me that "productivity or success cannot be our goal, we have to ask ourselves 'were we faithful? were we obedient?'" Pastor Mark mentioned in his sermon last week three words that I keep repeating to myself: Identity before productivity. Just like I gained so much from getting to know someone this morning by literally slowing down my pace, I am also getting to know my Savior by remaining, by staying, by feeling, and listening, by finding my identity and becoming who God wants me to be, He is pruning me to give fruit.

At the end of our run, my new friend said to me "you know, I didn't even know I could keep this pace." Even when we slow down and we think we cannot possible be helping, even when we think that we have nothing to give, we are still being used to encourage others and let them know that they too have more to give, if we are faithful.



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