Your Vocation As A "Marathon Run"

Your Vocation As A "Marathon Run"

DAY 4 OF 4

Run the Marathon of life with endurance, patience and perseverance. 

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith.” (Hebrews 12:1, 2)

Usain Bolt, the world’s fastest man, has apparently never run a mile or a marathon. Sprinters do not have to, or do not aspire to acquire the patience or endurance to run a marathon. They want to do things which would be quickly done. But, life is not a sprint. Life is a marathon. 

A marathon runner needs to build a lot of endurance. A marathon runner needs to develop a lot of patience and perseverance. This is a process. It takes much thought and planning.

One does not get up one morning and decide to run a marathon. 

In the evening after a Chicago Marathon I got a text message from one of my students saying, “I ran the Chicago Marathon.” I was surprised, because this student had never indicated that he was training for the marathon. He did not register for the marathon. He just decided in the morning to go and run the Chicago Marathon. Needless to say, he was so severely injured that he had to drop out of classes for the rest of the semester. 

One must never do that. A Marathon is a Marathon!

A marathon runner must run regularly for at least year. One must begin with shorter distances- 1 mile, 2 miles, 5miles, 10 miles at a time. Before one runs a marathon, a runner must have completed three 20 milers. 

One must do cross training to build up muscles. 

All this training enables the marathon runner to build endurance. All this training enables the marathon runner to learn patience. It enables a marathon runner to develop perseverance. 

I have found marathon runners to be among the most patient people in regular life. I think it is because they have trained to be marathon runners. The resting heart rate of an average adult is between 60 and 100 beats per minute. The resting heart rate of a marathon runner is considerably lower- between 40-60 beats per minute. 

One memory is etched in my mind. The Chicago Marathon begins at 8 AM for my category of runners. When I ran my first Boston Marathon, I did not realize that it began at 11 AM, for my category of runners. I booked my flight from Manchester, NH, to return back, keeping Chicago Marathon in mind. When reached Boston, I realized that I was in trouble. So, I ran my first Boston Marathon to make the flight out of Manchester, NH. When I finished the marathon, I got the medal, and just kept running to find the car of my pastor friend who was to drive me to Manchester NH. It was 2 hour drive fighting the rush and crowds. During this drive, my pastor friend looked at me and said, “I am so tense, trying to get you to the airport. How come you are sitting there “cool a cucumber!” I said, “I don’t know. Maybe it is Jesus, and all that training for this marathon. It teaches you patience, and maybe to be ‘cool as a cucumber.’” I am so thankful for these lessons I have learnt in training for a marathon. There is much that one can learn to run this marathon called life. 

Jesus uses the same word which describes the marathon runners of Hebrews 11. When the world if falling apart around you, he says, “Perseverance and deep inner patience will preserve your inner being.” (Luke 21:19). 

A Prayer:

Oh Lord help me develop endurance, and learn patience for this marathon run called life. 

About this Plan

Your Vocation As A "Marathon Run"

I have run 10 marathons. I teach at a Christian university- North Park, in Chicago. It is such a joy for me to enable students to find their vocation as a "marathon run." It is sad that most modern Christians live two l...

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