Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: WIN (02/14/19)
TITLE: Triumphal Crossing
By Barbara Lynn Culler
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It was my first time to participate in a 5K Run/Walk with a local charity for sick children and their families. I believed that I could walk the three plus mile course; not realizing that it involved steep hills and rocky paths. It was for a good cause, and I was with my church team, so thought it would be fun.
The event was staged in a high school parking lot, and prior to the opening ceremony, folks gathered to organize into teams. Upbeat music played, getting everyone warmed up, and a feeling of excitement penetrated the early morning air. I felt exhilarated, although I had discomfort in lower back, and toes starting to feel numb from standing too long, despite pre-medicating with ibuprofen.
At the airhorn’s blast, hordes of enthusiastic people poured out into the new housing division, and up through the streets of the city. The course diverged onto a scenic, undulating dirt and gravel pathway that traversed behind a golf course and private homes. The route then merged back onto sloping streets that skirted a wilderness park, and led back to the venue.
I was definitely out of shape, as my overweight and arthritic body balked the entire time. I had to pay attention to how I was walking so that I would not slip on the pebbles. I was hurting all over and was forced to take several quick breaks, gathering strength to continue. This was no longer fun. Yet, I was determined to complete the course.
My teammates were far ahead of me, as was everyone else, except for one woman who struggled behind me. I introduced myself, and Claudia and I walked together; joking about our situation as we plodded up and down the hills. Each time we encountered a check point, we asked:
"Are we there yet?"
The answer would be a variation of “almost."
We were told: ”just down the street,” "over the summit,” or even, "just two more blocks!”
They lied. One honest boy scout said: "you're getting there!”
The stations closed down as we passed through.
The burning in my lower back forced periodic stops to stretch and bend in relief, but I kept on going. Finally, after two hours of walking, I spotted the 5K sign at the high school entrance. With renewed energy, I propelled my beat-up body a few more feet to the finish line; literally the last participant to complete the course.
The event volunteers were already tearing down rally signs and booths as we entered the campus and went our separate ways. All of my teammates were gone, as well as the pancakes that had been served- I had looked forward to having pancakes. I did manage to get a few scraps of scrambled egg, three small chunks of fruit, and a carton of orange juice, for which I was grateful.
This was a learning experience, but I will not do it again! However, even though I was alone, and felt like I’d been through a cattle stampede, I was triumphant in completing the strenuous charity walk. It didn’t matter that I came in dead last and that there were no great rewards, applause, or recognition that I’d achieved anything special. But I knew that I prevailed over my handicaps, and I praised God.
My eyes were on the goal line of completing the walk, though I couldn't see it till I was upon it.
This is how I should be in my Christian walk- to fix my eyes on Jesus, the One who knows the life course I'm meant to fulfill. When my earthly passage has been completed, I will no longer suffer throbbing feet and aching back, for it will be the most victorious finish line to finally hobble across!
Therefore, since we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses, Let us throw off everything that hinders, and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let use fix our eyes on Jesus the author and perfecter of our faith. Hebrews 12:1-2a NIV
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