Why I’m Not Racing Today

There was a race in Nashville today. Actually I should say there IS a race in Nashville today- it doesn’t actually start for another couple of hrs, but I decided late last night that I’m not going. Usually the times I don’t feel like racing are the times I need it most. It helps me clear my head, refocus on my long-term goals, and feel better overall. This time it’s different.19713_860775994004483_1182053013396796429_n

This time it isn’t a decision based on lack of motivation or just feeling lazy like the others, it’s based on feeling so completely drained and exhausted from the week that if I were to race I would get to the end of it and feel accomplished, but useless for the rest of the weekend. I’m already toeing that line of complete uselessness and pushing myself to the max in a race is all it would take to send me hurtling into a hermit-like existence for several days. All week I worked, went to committee meetings, prepared decorations for a banquet, took care of 2 houses, 8 dogs, and 3 cats, sorted out graduate school finances, ran my normal week errands, and hit my workouts Mon-Thur. I never made it to bed earlier than 10:30 pm and several nights bedtime was midnight. I have pushed myself a little further every day and last night I realized that as much as this race sounds like fun (there’s a Cinco de Mayo party involved of course it would be fun!) the negatives outweigh the good. So I’m taking a break. Not on a grand scale of taking a week off, not even taking the whole weekend off from training, but a break nonetheless.db5a571e65024249835a8c67e3206c6f

Saturday is my Sabbath, always has been and always will be. Racing on Sabbath is a subject I stay in close communion with God over. It is a personal choice with God’s blessing, but that’s its own post for another time. That being said, Sabbath today is a day for me to spend quiet time at home with God letting Him renew me mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically. I love training and I love racing. In order to continue both I have to stay healthy in all aspects of my life. So today I take deep breaths and recenter and I let this race go.

acceptance

Like Jesus Does

“All the crazy in my dreams,
Both my broken wings,
Every single piece of everything I am.
She knows the man I ain’t,
She forgives me when I can’t.
That devil, man, he don’t stand a chance.
She loves me like Jesus does.”

I heard this song for the first time yesterday afternoon. It’s called “Like Jesus Does” and it’s sung by Eric Church. I absolutely love it. Why? Not just because it’s a country love song, but because it has such an important message. God’s love  is all-powerful and everyone should love those around them with that same unfailing love.

loves me like jesus

God gave everyone free choice, it’s what makes us humans instead of robots.  That means that each one of us has to decide to love others the way Jesus does every day no matter what. It’s not a choice someone else can make for us. What does loving someone like Jesus mean? I think Eric Church nailed it: you accept and support everything about a person, not just the good, and you forgive them and let them know it. It means accepting that everyone makes mistakes and accepting the good with the bad in a relationship, whatever that relationship is.

Of course it also means the people around you can choose to embrace or ignore the love you give. Jesus died so we could all be free from sin, but not everyone chooses to accept His salvation. It doesn’t mean He loves them any less, and eventually He will have to let them go no matter how painful it is because of their own choices. Sadly, I can draw parallels in my life.

How can I love a stubborn, hard-headed, pain-in-the-ass man like Jesus does when all he does is turn his nose up at me? I loved him the only way I knew how until I got tired of fighting with him and gave it all up. Can anything really change? How can I love someone like Jesus does when I only talk to them once a year, but each time it makes my skin crawl?

These are my struggles, but God is telling me not to struggle with them anymore. I am called to love others like Jesus did. I am called to strive towards a Christ-like character of love and forgiveness. People can reject the love and forgiveness I offer, but I will find peace only by resting in Jesus’ love and sharing it with others to the best of my ability. Jesus experienced the ultimate rejection of being sentenced to death for His love and His belief in the goodness of humanity, and yet He loves us and always will.

I can rise above my struggles only by asking for God’s strength and letting Him guide me.