Four Leaf Clover

 

Several years ago I got the running bug.  This is not to say I run all the time, but since a certain milestone birthday I have taken up running as a great source of stress relief, exercise and weight loss. Before this St. Patrick’s Day it had been exactly a year since I ran my last 5K.  So I asked (begged) my boys to join me on a 5K race which included an Irish dinner afterwards.  I ran a little to train leading up to the 5K, but that usually equated to walking my dog in a fast pace daily.

St. Patrick’s Day was a very rainy day here in small town Florida and I was worried it was going to be cancelled. We went back and forth whether we were going to run or not and I was getting bummed.  We drove over all ready to race and sat in our cars until 30 mins before the start.  The rain did slow down, but my biggest fear was that it would pour down on us half way through.  I decided to run in my rain jacket to protect my phone (which is my source of running music).

Joining me I had:

Mr. “I ran cross country in high school, so I should be good” (he is in his second year of college)

Mr. “I am probably going to walk because my ankles hurt”

Mr. “I play a lot of basketball so I am good.”

Oh to be young again and not have to train.  There was a great crowd and many people dressed up for St. Patrick’s Day.  My favorite thing to see are families that run together with their young kids.  Of course my motivation is not to let one of the little kids or woman pushing a baby stroller pass me. ha.

It was not an easy race, but I had a lot fun and I came within .09 seconds of my goal. I.WILL.TAKE.IT.  I was so proud of myself and excited.

Mr. “I am probably going to walk because my ankles hurt” (black jacket in the picture) beat us all and had a great time.  (I think that was his ploy all along).  My other two sons did a great job also, especially for not training.

5K race 2014

Sometimes you have a day that fills your inner joy to the brim. It was a fun event and great memories with my three boys, joining us was my favorite girlfriend and her husband; and we had a great time.

Oh and want to know why it is good to train? Guess who woke up very, very sore? Yep my three boys. I ached a little bit but by the second day I was read to run again. THAT is where the benefit of training comes in, the recovery period.

It was a great St. Patrick’s Day and one I will always look back on with great memories.

gethsemane

“How is the sudden and dramatic change of atmosphere between the upper room and Gethsemane to be explained, even in a measure?”
~Frederick S Leahy in The Cross He Bore

Lent started on Wednesday and I am using this time to focus more on Christ and what he has done for me. When I was reading The Cross He Bore that sentence hit me. How many times have we felt like we have gone from the “Upper Room” of close intimate fellowship to the pain and upheaval of “Gethsemane.”

Jesus went from fellowship to fear in the matter of hours.

There was agony and sorrow.

The disciples lives were changed forever.

One disciple would prove to be a traitor and take his own life.

Other disciples would place their life on the line for their Lord and Savior.

One thing was for certain, life that existed in the Upper Room would never be the same after Gethsemane.

Maybe you have had a life experience that altered your life or left you wounded. You are not alone, God has been there and he is there with you now. Gethsemane means “the oil press,” God was pressed and crushed for you.  If you are experiencing life’s pain and suffering know that you have a God who has defeated death.

Sometimes our mind needs to rest in that and feelings will follow later.

 

what people think

I have a confession to make. I care too much what people think.

Those closest to me, probably already know that. Those who only know me occasionally may think I am aloof, when in reality I am insecure and care what you think. This is not a characteristic I am proud of, but by the time I have reached my 40′s I have realized that what people think really is not about me (can you tell my love language is affirmation, ha!).  I had someone tell me they enjoyed their 40′s and 50′s the most because they finally realized they did not care what others think and they can finally be themselves.

In your twenty’s some people are still dating and trying to find that person they want to spend the rest of their life with. Your life is rotating around what others think. You think about what you wear, how you smell, how you portray yourself. Then after a date, you go home and relive everything in your mind and criticize yourself over and over again. It is such a painful, yet exciting age.

In your thirty’s possibly you are new parent with young kids and you care what others think of your parenting (we have all been part of that ‘play group’ of mothers who like to compare), because you are convinced you are messing things up. You don’t want others to know you screamed at your child as you were on your way to church and told them they will serve the Lord “and like it.” You want others to be impressed that you have it all together, “you can bring home the bacon and fry it up in a pan and never let you husband forget he is man” type of woman. When in reality your family, especially your husband,  have not seen you in anything more than sweat pants and hair in a clip.

In your forty’s your young tikes have turned into monsters. They have entered the “teen years” (a.k.a the time God brings all mothers to their knees).  You are constantly hit from left field and realize that your children were not listening all those times you were training them.  You look at them and ask “exactly who gave birth to you?”  It is then you realize it is entirely your fault.  Truthfully, this is the most loneliness stage of them all (and where I am currently).  Pride keeps you silent. You want each kid to have the freedom to grow in Christ without everyone remembering every mistake they have made.

I am told in your 50’s you finally become who you have wanted to become all your life.  You enjoy your young romance once again, like when you were dating; only you both have grey hair and more wrinkles.  But if you are like me when you look at your spouse you see the person you fell in love with not the wrinkles, extra weight and wrinkles that may have appeared.

And as far as I am concerned after your 50’s it is all gravy. God is blessing you and the world needs you. The world needs your wisdom.  If you are in retirement, know your work is not done, in fact it has picked up. God wants you to share and mentor those who are younger.

It is then when you say: Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming ‘WOW What a Ride!