Carry me, Jesus.

This morning I checked something off my bucket list: A half-marathon. I must say, it was a dang good feeling to cross that finish line as people were cheering you on, pushing you to take that last leap and not give up.

While the physical success was a great feeling and I am already ready for another one, my mind was focused on something much different as I was running the race today.

I was overwhelmed with gratefulness and determination.

In fact, as I was running, I thought “I have GOT to write about how I’m feeling write now! But what does that even look like?!”

So, here goes.

As I was about to start the race, I turned on my pandora station to Jeremy Camp and the song “I’m Trading My Sorrows” came on. If you don’t know that song, go listen to it. No seriously, don’t wait to finish reading this post. It will so encourage you right where you are and make the rest of this even better!

The lyrics say:
I’m trading my sorrow.

I’m trading my shame.

I’m laying it down for the joy of the Lord!

I’m trading my sickness.

I’m trading my pain.

I’m laying it down for the joy of the Lord!
And we say yes Lord yes Lord yes yes Lord!

Yes Lord yes Lord yes yes Lord!

Yes Lord yes Lord yes yes Lord Amen!

I’m pressed but not crushed persecuted not abandoned.

Struck down but not destroyed.

I’m blessed beyond the curse for his promise will endure.

And his joy’s gonna be my strength.

Though the sorrow may last for the night

His joy comes with the morning!

Imagine it being 6:15 in the morning, still dark outside, the ground is wet cause it’s been raining all throughout the night and you’re about to run 13.1 miles. I have terrible shin splints (genius idea to do a half-marathon, I know) so I was extremely nervous. And I’m a competitive person so walkin’ this thing just wasn’t an option.

So I plug my earphones in, turn the volume on full blast and close my eyes.

Y’all, I can’t even explain it but Jesus turned on the green light in my soul and when I started that race, I KNEW I was going to be able to make my goal.

As I ran each mile, I noticed all different kinds of people running. Some had on shirts in memory of someone who had passed away and this was their way of recognizing the person. Others had shirts from past marathons and this was their hobby, a huge part of their life. There was an even a little boy running the race (p.s. WHAT! I couldn’t even play freeze tag without getting winded when I was that age.)

I started out beside a guy who had shorts on in the pattern of an American flag, an army shirt and a backpack on. His face was determined. His eyes held all his focus. He was running for someone else, someone bigger than Him. He was running for his country.

As my feet pounded the pavement, I prayed to God over and over “Carry me in this race, carry me.”

Guess what?

He did. The whole way there. From the first step to the finish line.

While I know a half-marathon isn’t climbing Mount Everest, this experience reminded me that I can literally do anything that I set my mind to. ANYTHING. But ONLY if I rely on Jesus to carry me through it. The definition of impossible was made by man and it’s a good thing we don’t rely on man to determine what we can and can not do!

Walking around after the race, I was just so encouraged by all of these people who had smiles on their faces, sweat running down their face and a medal around their neck. Each person had done what they had set out to do. I could tell by the look on so many people’s faces that this race had nothing to do with an official time, it had everything to do with the fact that they had done it, they had completed the race.

So, get this: You can do anything you set your mind to but ONLY if you rely on the power of Jesus Christ.

Also, get this: Nothing good comes APART from Jesus. And a heck of a lot of things are impossible without Him.

So, grab your water bottle. Turn on your ipod and claim right now that you are trading your sorrows and you are trading your shame because JOY has come! And today? It’s your day to let Jesus carry you, my friend.

You get a piggy back ride the whole time. How AWESOME is that?!

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