Tuesday, August 9, 2011

stop faking it!

I was coming home today from a great swim. I was tired but high on endorphins and noticing the world in an enthusiastic manner. My honda fit crested the hill just before I got home and on this hill was a runner. He was killing that hill but his running was laboured as was his breathing. His face was contorted and he wanted to stop, but as he saw my car approach he kicked it up a notch and gave it his all towards the top of the hill. While I was impressed I was also concerned, the movement of his limbs and the expression on his face indicated to me he needed to stop or slow down for a break. I wondered if my car had not approached would he have pushed so hard? 

I know myself as a runner and I would have done the same thing. I admit I run faster when there are cars and people to watch but if I am alone on the road with not a soul to see what I am doing I know I do not push as hard. I know this technique of mine has nothing to do with the actual training for a sport and everything to do with my ego and pride but I am not ashamed to admit it. I want to look like I am a good runner. I pretty much kill myself on a hill, increase my pace or do an extra loop on a run if  I am aware someone is looking. Once I turn the corner or the car disappears out of sight only  then do I crash to a stop sucking in oxygen from the like a newly rescued drowning victim. I fake it and I am no longer ashamed to tell you that.

I might be the only one who does that when they run, but I cannot imagine that I am alone in this "faking it to look good technique in life". I am sure if we stop to analyse ourselves we will all find a place where we so badly want to be better than we are that we fake it.

One of the the benefits of faking it, it does force you to go farther, harder or faster than you would otherwise, that has to be good right? I am sure sometimes that can further your ability as a runner, but what I have found as a very very mediocre runner that the best thing for me is a slow steady consistent pace, to run honestly with my abilities. It is mentally taxing and seems so very difficult but after time your body learns to run and finish well.

I love the analogy used in the Bible as the Christian life is compared to running.

 1 Corinthians 9:24
 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? 
Run in such a way as to get the prize.

I sometimes try to fake it in front of God too. Silly, I know as He knows and sees all things but still my pride says I need to fake it sometimes. Faking it can look like holding back tears, not admitting frustrations, saying yes to everything when no was a better answer, always thinking you have the answers when deep down your very core has doubts.. I could go on. Faking it in front of God looks like many things, take a minute to see where you tend to fake it. 

The bottom line is, there is no need to fake it, God does not expect us to be more than what he made us to be, he knows our very thoughts and sees all our emotions. Faking it in front of God only tricks ourselves and maybe those around us. Like running, finding the pace you are meant to take at this stage in your life is important. If you have recently experienced a loss, are realizing some of your powerful doubts, are struggling with a depression or other illness your pace will need to change for a while. 

A race can never be won by one concerned about how he looks to others, it will be run by a runner who knows his pace and can push himself within that range. The Christian life can only be lived in joy when we are living within the honest knowledge of where we are at today and thanking God that He has us, no matter what. God has us in all of it.

So my thoughts for today, stop faking it! run, walk or limp with honesty towards God, He has you.

Shine on my friends

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