Friday, March 17, 2017

Mile 20

Years of preparation. Months of training. Hours of chats with my running bud. Miles and miles full of tears, funnies, prayers, worship, lots of H2O and Goo, potty emergencies... a stress fracture, soreness, pain, and too many highs and lows to count. And there we were... completing our first full marathon. At a comfortable pace and without any stopping, we were about 3 and a half hours into our run. I was feeling strong, confident, unstoppable... until... Mile 20. While my body continued it's robotic movement, my mind began to wander from focus. I started thinking about why I was even doing this... how much my feet and legs really hurt... how I wanted to stop... could I really finish without stopping or walking once... BUT at that point, the idea of stopping hurt worse than the idea of continuing the rhythm that my body had been in for over 3 hours. The "battle of the brain" continued, then it happened... complete PANIC. I struggled to catch my breath while my heart beat almost out of my chest. I had hit "the wall".  

Years of preparation. Months of training. Hours of chats with social workers. Days and days full of tears, funnies, prayer, worship... and too many highs and lows to count. And here we are at what feels like... Mile 20. We are completely exhausted emotionally and physically at this point of the process. We knew it would not be easy, but we also didn't know it would be this hard. We still have so many questions and not many answers. Although we have come so far, we still have a ways to go. BUT we cannot and we will not stop. 

It was at Mile 20 where I learned and truly experienced the power of perseverance. While one foot continued in front of the other at pace, I took several long, deep breaths, then told my self out loud multiple times... "one step at a time". Instead of thinking about the distance that remained and the difficulty of each incline and turn, I forced myself to focus on the "present pavement" that lie below each step of my worn out running shoes. It was at this point, I was able to return to easy breathing and a peaceful pace while enjoying the people and places surrounding me at each mile, each moment, each step.

Perseverance... "steadfastness in doing something despite difficulty"  

If you are not presently in a "mile 20 moment" or just recently broke through "the wall" of mile 20, you will eventually find your self there. The "battle of the brain" will cause your mind to wander, lose focus and may even result in complete panic. Don't stop, friends. Take a deep breath and know you are not alone. As you continue to put one foot in front of the other at a peaceful pace, force yourself to focus on the beauty of people and places surrounding you on the journey. See your tribe who has chosen to keep pace with you and let them experience the pain and the joy of the "present pavement". One. Step. At. A. Time.

Romans 5:1-5 "Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us."

Peace > Perseverance > Purpose > Confidence > Character > HOPE

So... while we wait to break through "the wall" of Mile 20, please continue to pray. You have chosen to join us on this journey and because of that, we continue to be truly grateful and humbled by the love and support shown for our little family. Your continued prayers are most appreciated as we desire nothing more than for God to be glorified through this journey. Please continue to be in prayer for the following:
- Our preparation for parenting
- Our kiddos' spiritual, physical, and emotional health 
- For those in Haiti and Colombia caring for our little loves
- God's provision. We are taking a huge step of faith, knowing that our God is able. Please prayerfully consider helping support us financially. You can make a donation by going to or in order for your gift to be tax deductible.  

James 1:2-4 "Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing."

1 Corinthians 15:58 "Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain." 

Lamentations 3:22-23 "The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning, great is your faithfulness."

Hebrews 12:1-2 "Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God."

Worship in Waiting:
"Through and Through" United Pursuit/Will Reagan
"Girl On Fire" Alicia Keys (One of my "go to" running song for not just hitting "the wall", BUT crushing it!!!) 

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