This morning I ran a mile and a half non-stop. Then I ran intervals for a total of probably another 1/2 a mile, for a total of 3 miles.
Big deal to some, no. Big deal for me, yes. Huge yes!
I can do other types of workouts for an hour with no problem, but running…..that’s a different story.
I’ve never been a runner but for whatever reason, sometimes I just crave a run. Well, I crave
running jogging intervals. I think part of it is that I’ve fallen in love with Revving the Word podcasts. It’s like a bible study while you move your body in worship. Something amazing happens in that space.
As I was running this morning, it was my intention to just run to a specified spot then begin my run/walk intervals. But as I got to that spot, I felt good and just kept running. I began to praise the Lord that I felt better than I have in a long time. There was not one spot on me that hurt. I was breathing easy and rhythmic. I was comfortable.
As I got closer to the mile marker, I was telling myself that I’d take a break there. Go back to a walk. I was starting to feel like I was reaching my max and if I walked a little, I could run some more.
But a recurring theme from Rev Training just kept playing over and over in my head.
YOU WERE MEANT FOR HARD THINGS. YOU CAN DO THE HARD THINGS.
As I turned the corner at the mile mark, I told God that I would keep running if He gave me the strength. I was feeling like I was at my physical stopping point, but I know that His strength is in me. I know that by His power I can continue.
I just kept thanking Him for allowing me a gorgeous day to run. I thanked Him for the newness of spirit. I thanked Him for the physical ability to run. I thanked Him for all the little forgotten blessings that lead up to that run.
The podcast that I was listening to was interval training and I was even able to follow some of the intervals toward the 1 1/2 mile mark. I was able to push harder and then return to a jog (instead of walking which I’d normally do). I was spent at that next turn, but exhilarated at the same time.
I CAN DO THE HARD THINGS
As I thought about this statement, I started to think about another term used throughout Rev Well training/retreat……
YOU BE YOU, BOO.
I had every intention of writing about these two statements separately, but they just keep coming up together in my mind.
It may seem silly to some that I’m excited about running such a short distance, not even running, really….more like jogging. But to me, that’s stretching. It’s me being me. I can probably walk faster than I jogged that mile and a half, but it’s just different. It’s a different mind game. It’s your flesh and your mind sparring in a different way.
I NEED TO DO ME BECAUSE I AM MADE TO DO THE HARD THINGS and my hard things are different than yours.
I have been told so many times in my life that I’m strong. I’ve been complimented that I relate well to others. I’ve been told that I inspire. And I’ve been thanked for being vulnerable, raw, and gut-wrenchingly honest.
I’m that one that will give you my whole back story of losing my best friend if you ask me a question that necessitates the whole story. Probably more than you bargained for within 5 minutes of meeting me, but I will answer your question authentically. I love telling my hard stories because it lets me show how God was there for me. It lets me shine His glory.
However, even though I can be bold in some ways, for most of my life, I have lived in fear of what others thought of me. I have stuck to what I thought was acceptable and pushed down anything that I thought might bring out a less than desireable response from others.
I don’t want to be the crazy annoying one that gets on people’s nerves, so I stifle my personality.
I don’t want to be the one that thinks that she knows everything, so I keep my excitement and knowledge about some topics quiet.
I don’t want to be questioned on something that I think I’m being called to do, so I just find it easier to follow the crowd and do what adults do; find a job, strive, collect things, save for retirement, be responsible.
I don’t want to be called out for the way I look or have people think that I’m trying to gain attention or impress, so I pretend that I don’t care about my haircut, makeup, or how I look. I tell myself that none of that matters and that I’m fine the way I am. Which is fine unless I do care about how I look……sometimes how you look changes your whole outlook on life.
I am afraid of messing up and being called out about how I act, so I’m afraid to share God with others because what if they see the mess in me?
God brought all of this out of me at retreat. The change that I feel is astounding. I don’t feel that I need to fit anyone’s mold anymore. I am me. Perfectly designed and uniquely made. I am who I am for a reason and a purpose. God doesn’t want me to be anybody but who I am. He sees me as being perfect and He loves me, flaws and all. He is the only one that I need to seek approval from.
All of this mess came out at the weirdest time.
I have loved fitness for years and have even thought that it would be amazing to be a trainer, but I look far from the image of a fitness trainer. I felt that no one would look at me and think I could help them as it looks like I need help myself. The thought of going down that road was waaaaaaay too far out of my comfort zone.
I knew that I’d have to teach a little session at retreat, but took comfort in knowing that it wouldn’t be in front of everyone there. I figured that I could do anything for a few minutes and laugh it off when I looked stupid. I wasn’t the only one that was having to do this for the first time, so I figured that we could laugh about it together.
I told you before that on Tuesday I wanted to go home. But Wednesday……………………………….
Wednesday was the day that we had to pick a few moves and teach them to our small randomly picked group.
I was struggling coming up with the moves that I wanted to use. I felt time crunched and a little panicky. I started wondering how I was going to do my 10 minute teaching when I couldn’t even get ready to teach 4 moves.
But then I started teaching and I came alive.
Just Tuesday I had said, “I don’t want this much fitness. I’m trying to keep an open mind for the Lord, but I just don’t see myself teaching fitness classes. I am a writer and have a heart for “counseling”….lets do more of that”.
Then I taught this 4 move teeny-tiny little routine.
I fell in love.
I no longer cared what anyone thought. I smiled through the next 1/2 hour of the workout (which eventually combined all of the retreat participants back to a single workout while they pulled random people out of the crowd to teach). I found energy that was gone before the little teeny-tiny routine. I couldn’t stop talking about how much fun I had.
All because the theme was YOU BE YOU. What you do is enough. It is perfect. YOU are perfect. You are a good idea. You have good ideas. You are more than your weaknesses. God is made perfect in your weakness. Live loved. Love > fear. You are made to do hard things. Things way outside of your comfort zone. Growth happens out there. GET.OUT.THERE!
We are all made special and for our own purposes. If we never DO THE HARD THINGS we are most likely missing out on what God has for us. I am a “do it myself” fitness person, or so I thought. I am a writer and wouldn’t mind speaking, but what about the rest? What does God have in store for me as a #FITNESSTEACHERgospelpreacher? What if I would’ve stayed in my shell?
I ended up getting called up on stage on our last night and joined with a few others for a drumstick routine. Yep, I messed it up. Yep, I was off beat. Yep, it took me a minute to get in sync with the others. Yep, I still struggle with body issues. But guess what???? I DIDN’T CARE!!!! I didn’t care about the cameras. I didn’t care about the facebook lives. I was just elated to be in the moment and worshiping through movement.
God made each of us perfect and it doesn’t matter what others think. We give others too much credit. Most of the time when we think they are thinking something, they aren’t. They are too worried about their own insecurities to worry about you. And if they are judging you…..THAT IS ON THEM. That is their issue. That is their own heart junk manifesting outward.
We are made to do the hard things because that causes us to lean on God for strength. It requires us to fall into Him so that He can fulfill His promises and bring Himself glory. It opens us up for the process of being reformed and polished into His purpose for our lives. The hard things hurt and they are uncomfortable, but they are so very worth it. If we push through the hard things and do things that we don’t want to do, it shows us that we can be who we are supposed to be without worrying about what others think. It allows us to experience FREEDOM and that in turn allows us to help others find FREEDOM.
My run this morning was hard.
My initial fitness teaching was hard.
But they were both worth it. I will continue to do the hard things because I found a new love. I was pushed and I feel so much better because of it. Get over yourself and do the hard things. Be you even when it hurts or you stand alone. Be comfortable in the fact that you are wonderfully made. You are still breathing. You have purpose on this earth. If you stay away from hard things, things that make you feel weird or uncomfortable, you may never find your purpose. I’m still not sure where this breakthrough will lead me, but I’m confident that God wastes nothing and that He has a plan for how this will play out in my life.
Stop hiding who you are out of fear. Do the hard things and FREEDOM WILL COME. You just do YOU and the rest will fall into place. Don’t hide something that sparks interest in you because of fear. Do whatever it is in your own way. Speaking, writing, fitness, dressing, lawncare, hairstyle; whatever it is, do it YOUR way. You may find they best YOU on the other side of that fear (hard place).
Do you stifle the real you because of what you THINK others are thinking about you? Are you willing to do the hard things to better your life and find freedom? What is holding you back?
Stay tuned later this week for the 2nd post on “unpacking” from Revelation Wellness Instructor Training Retreat 🙂
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