As I posted the other day, one of our crew who helped lead at SUrf Camp last summer decided to fundraise for SU by entering his first ever 10K at the Great Scottish Run last weekend.
Today, I received a little personal account of his experience. So, here it is in his own words:
“I’m going to try to write this without sounding cheesy or self-congratulatory but on Sunday I ran the Great Scottish Run 10k challenge and felt carried through each kilometre and counselled by the Holy Spirit in an hour and five minutes of my life that genuinely felt like my own personal worship event, with Rend Collective as my resident band and “The Art of Celebration”, the chosen set list.
I didn’t sleep at all well the night before and come 3 am we got our usual visitation from our son who wouldn’t just lie still but wriggled and squirmed well into the night. My alarm went off at 6 am and the thought of driving though to Glasgow to then run 10k didn’t seem like such a good idea anymore!
To add to that my well planned 10k challenge 8 week running plan had been put off the rails by a persistent dose of man flu and then a bout of eczema which meant that I hadn’t been able to exercise for 2 weeks. On Saturday 4 October I felt ok and tried to run 5k from my house to the beach and back and failed miserably but at least I had shaken off my cold and skin was looking much better. I decided that even if I walked the 10k I would do it to honour the people who had sponsored me.
So I reach for my bible, bleary eyed at around 6:15 after putting my alarm on snooze a couple of times and read this;
‘But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.’ Isaiah 40:31
I found it funny but then flippantly prayed that if that was the case God, I was going to ‘run and not grow weary!’ I decided not to set a time target but to just run and if I managed to complete the course without stopping then I would have achieved my goal.
As I waited at the starting line I read some of the t shirts of people around me and they were so humbling. ‘Running for daughter who has cancer’ to ‘Running for my baby with Leukaemia’ or ‘in memory of my Dad’ every person with a story of personal struggles and causes worth fighting for but each running the same race.
I hadn’t thought too much about what music I wanted to listen to on my mp3 player on the way round but standing there I just wanted to make this challenge all about Him and lift these people around me up. So Rend Collective was the music of choice.
Through each stage of the race there was a marker telling you how far you had run and for me a song of encouragement;
1K ‘The joy joy joy making me whole, though I’m broken, I am running Into Your arms of love’
2K ‘Burn like a star, Light a fire in our hearts’
3K. ‘In my wrestling and in my doubts, In my failures You won’t walk out, your great love will lead me through You are the peace in my troubled sea’.
4K. ‘You are the power in our veins, Our Lord, our God, We are more than conquerors, through Christ, You have overcome this world, this life!’
5K only half way! ‘It’s only in surrender that I’m free’ (at this stage my legs were beginning to ache and a slow song wasn’t what I needed but then came…)
6K. ‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, What is coming, what is coming, Never-ending joy, never-failing love, You are coming, You are coming!’ (I had not ran further than 6k in my training so I was now running into the unknown)
7K. ‘Yeah, you lift me when I’m sinking, Like the swell of mighty oceans, the power of redemption, Yeah; it gives me wings to soar’!!!!!!!!!!!! COME ON!!
8K. ‘You’re not finished with me yet!’
9K. ‘Stronger than any weakness, You are my fortress!!’
10K ‘Boldly I approach Your throne, Blameless now I’m running home, By Your blood I come, Welcomed as Your own, Into the arms of majesty!!!’
At the end stretch I looked up and saw the Soul Surfers crew cheering me on, which make me appreciate just what a great wee community we have. I had achieved my goal of running without stopping but felt God had shown be so much more than that. At SUrf Camp I remember Stephen Jones had an amazing power point presentation which told us something like 100 facts about who God is, by the end of the talk everyone was just cheering! I felt like that on Sunday, when surrounded by people with genuine hurt and loss it put my problems into perspective, you tell the darkness just how powerful God is and if you run, you will not grow weary”.