Updated: Sep 2, 2020
“I want to be on the track team.” This statement didn’t come as a surprise. After all, as a toddler Bayley had already conducted several unofficial track meets in Walmart, on a cruise ship and the mall.
As it turned out, the prerequisite for running track was joining the cross country team. After the first practice, Bayley looked as if she had gone down a few times in a dunking booth. Resisting the urge to be too much of a helicopter Mom. I asked, “Is this something that you still want to do?” secretly hoping she would say no
Her response was “Yes, I’m just tired.”
And so, it started.
Practice after practice, early Saturday morning meets, traveling down backroads that had backroads before the sun crossed over the horizon was our routine.
The meets would start out with all of the runners in an open field as we cheered on the side lines. At the sound of the gun, they would take off and make a turn into the woods. Bayley told me, “there’s everything in the woods.....snakes, deer, we’re jumping over bottles...everything!” While she was talking, I appeared perfectly calm. But on the inside, a “come apart” was in full effect.
In spite of starting each meet strong and dashing towards the finish line, her time just wasn’t improving.
At one meet as we were waiting for Bayley, Frank suddenly disappeared. Not too long afterwards, I saw her sprinting towards the finish line.
When I finally saw Frank, I told him that he should have seen how fast Bayley was running. He said, “I know. I went up to those woods and saw her walking .... and yelled “Bayley! Get out of those woods!”
It's Not Our Destination
You might not be on a cross country team but, we’re all running our own race. And whether we like it or not, circumstances, losses and tragedies can force us into the woods. The trees and untamed shrubs of depression and fear have a way of overwhelming us. They cause our once vibrant gait to slow down to barely placing one foot in front of the other.
It happens. But, God doesn’t want us to stay in this state. It’s not our destination. Instead, let your faith take the lead. Trust that "...He who began a good work in you is faithful to complete it.” - Philippians 1:6 God is bigger than whatever tries to confine you to the woods.
Even though it seems like you’re alone in your situation, you are not. One of my favorite scriptures is Deuteronomy 31:8 NLT - “Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
This scripture makes me feel happy all over. It reminds me that God is aware and has every step of our journey covered. Just keep reminding yourself that you are not alone.
Some of my time trying to catch a glimpse of the runners was spent watching the clock and chatting with Moms. But, mostly I prayed. And, no matter how long it took my girl to cross the finish line, I waited.
Did you know that there are people waiting and praying for you? They want you to win. They’re waiting for God to show himself strong in your life. Seeing you win is just the motivation they need to keep going. So my dear, pick up your pace and get out of those woods! Your destiny is waiting on you.
Your Sister Friend,