There is an image that I think of when life gets challenging. It’s a memory from several years ago. At the time, I was running, A LOT. And there wasn’t much that could prevent me from going on my Saturday morning run. One day, the sky was cloudy, it had been raining, but I thought the worse had past. It hadn’t. While on the run, there were moments where as the rain beat down upon my cap, I couldn’t see what was up ahead. All I could do was stay focused on where my foot was going next and, with faith, take that step. I know the final destination was my warm, dry apartment and I just had to keep going until I could get there.
It was a great lesson on several levels. First, check the forecast before you go for a run. (Something I still don’t do.) Secondly, it is a touchstone moment that I look back on in my life. Just like that stormy jog, there are days and weeks where the rain seems to be pouring down. Where I am going to go and how life is going to turn out seems very uncertain. The streets are slippery and one false move could mean a lot of pain. However, in the midst of those tentative times, I know that all I need to do is watch where my foot will land next. I don’t need to see the whole journey, I must faithfully follow the Way, until I reach my Heavenly home. My steps are uncertain, but my destination is not.
I Corinthians 9 compares our time here on Earth to a race. We are to train and prepare so that we might receive our Heavenly reward. In my mind’s eye whenever I think of this passage I focus on the victorious athlete crossing the finish line. What I don’t see is all the practice in the rain that got him there. May I take comfort in the times of uncertain steps, knowing that the prize for which I train will make every moment in the rain worth it.