Wednesday, March 26

That one time I ran a Half-Marathon

First I want to say Thank You!
Thank you to everyone who encouraged me (and Phillip) this weekend on Facebook and Instagram. It definitely encouraged me to go through with the race. If I am honest, I had fears. I wanted to bail and pretend that I did it. But I also REALLY wanted to prove to myself that I could do it. So... I did it. And it was perfect. Painful, but perfect.

We decided since the race was on a Sunday, that we would make a fun little family getaway out of it. I mean why not? We were traveling all the way to Dallas to run the race. 
I love to travel. It energizes me. I love going to places with high energy, good food and different cultures. While we were in Dallas this time, we stopped at a park on our way to meet up with some friends. I forgot the name of this park but it was everything I LOVE about the city.

Open grass area, food trucks, live music, playground, bistro tables scattered about, families having picnics, big buildings in the back ground, children running and playing. It was the perfect afternoon. And a perfect pre-race chill day.

 photo IMG_7380_zpsab8afcc9.jpg photo IMG_7421_zpseaf1509a.jpg photo IMG_7420_zpse10d4153.jpg

The next day was race day. I am thankful for my friend who ran the race with me. Jessica, her mom and I had trained hard for the last 3 months for this day.  I learned so much about myself during that run. 13.1 miles if a long way y'all! Especially for someone who just started running in January. I learned that our bodies can do just about anything we tell it to do. I learned that with the right amount of determination and dedication we can achieve big things. When you set goals and work diligently to meet them you reap a reward that you didn't even know was coming when that goal is met.

 photo IMG_7409_zpscd330135.jpg
 photo IMG_7410_zps208b492d.jpg

It felt good to do something for myself. It felt good to test my limits, to see how far I could push myself.  It felt good to cross that finish line knowing I did it. I finished it.

I am not the fastest runner. I am not the best runner. But I am a runner. I ran my race and I put all that I had into it. I finished under the time I wanted to finish it in and though I cried through the last 2 miles and I thought I would never make it, I did and I have never been more proud. (and I actually want to do it again) I ran alongside 10,000 other runners. Both professional and not. Their energy, their excitement, it pushed me and encouraged me. Together we were running. From all different places in life. Some of us moms, dads, grandparents, students and real life athletes. We were all out there running doing the best we could, working towards that finish line.

As I ran through the course I thought how similar this is to life. We are all running a race. We are all working towards goals and finish lines. Through some of the "miles" in our races we coast, feeling great. And then through some of the "miles" in our race we feel tired, worn down, busted and broken, but we have to keep going. You have to keep pressing because what's on the other side of those hard miles is victory!

I once said "I could never be a runner" and I once said "I could never run a half-marathon".  Friends, we have to push through those "I can't's" and "I could never's".  When you press through those, you begin to tap into a whole new world. You being to see your dreams come to life. Whatever your "run" may look like, you can do it. You can press through the junk and find victory. You can succeed at your dreams. Press in and press hard. You can overcome those obstacles because you ARE and overcomer. I will be right here cheering you along!

 photo IMG_7419_zpsf4d55388.jpg

So here's to that one time I ran a half marathon and it changed my life.

Saturday, March 15

Broken Bones

Wouldn't you know that on the first day of Phillip and I's longly anticipated vacation to Santa Monica, we would get a phone call with some unsettling news.

When I saw my sister in laws name come across the screen of my phone I knew something had happened. Maybe its motherly instinct? As I listened to her voice on the other end of the phone delivering the news, my heart sank.
Parker broke his arm. 
Being states away I felt guilty, frustrated and sad. I thought "surely its not broken".

My sweet sister in law drove him to the ER, my father in law met them there and we had him evaluate the situation. Sure enough...according to Dr. Papa the arm looked broken and he was heading into the ER. They set my little guys are that night and wrapped him up tight.

My momma heart was broken.
 photo IMG_7202_zpse501b593.jpg
After hearing how brave and tough our big guy was and after being reassured that he was doing just fine, we decided to not fly home early and wait until we got back Monday to deal with the arm.
Boys are tough. Mommas are not. My heart hurt the whole time I was there knowing one of my chickens had a broken bone. All was not right in my world.

We came home and tuesday morning we were at the Dr. early. We were given some more unsettling news.
They were going to have to RESET the bone. 
After attempting it TWICE at the ER.
 photo IMG_7306_zps0eca969f.jpgSo tuesday was spent going from one Dr. to the next and filling out several forms and signing several documents. It was a long and tiring day but Parker and I were able to have some good one on one time and we even snuck in a little date lunch.
 photo IMG_7305_zpse8e58de9.jpg
The next day we went in at 6:30am for the resetting. Y' is cruel to have to wake up at 5AM during Spring Break. It's even more cruel to have a little one with a broken bone during spring break!
 photo IMG_7252_zps4909a359.jpg

Our guy was tough and brave. He was more fearful of the IV then he was of the Dr. having to set his arm. I think the excitement of him having a super cool blue cast to go home in is what got him through.
 photo IMG_7249_zpsa92fb2ba.jpg

Thank you all for your love, thoughtful texts, prayers and gifts. He has felt encouraged by your thoughtfulness. And if you see him around, ask him for his sharpie. He on a mission to get that cast full of signatures.
 photo IMG_7272_zps7e8fcd51.jpg

Unraveling Threads of Lies

As I listened to the waves and the water roll up and down the shore line, and as I slowly inhaled the crisp, salty air carried from the top of the water, I felt a tug.  I felt something deep in my soul let go.  Stress, hurts, disappoints, anxiety, worry, these are the things that creep into the loose cracks of my heart. They always over stay their welcome. The tight threads of these unwelcome visitors leave me tangled and knotted. They twist and turn and begin to unravel the tapestry of freedom and grace that has been given to me. A freedom and grace I have anxiously sought after and claimed.
 photo IMG_7307_zps7baffc18.jpg As I sat on that beach, my toes in the sand, entertaining my unwelcome guests, I was reminded of a verse I had recently read.

"How precious are your thoughts about me, O God! They are innumerable! I can't even count them, they outnumber the grains of sand!" - Ps. 139:17-18

My unwelcome guest, the ones that creep in through the cracks, they snuff out these truths, these reminders of who I am and what God thinks of me. They breathe death, lies and bitterness into the places where passion, truth, power and strength belong.  They knot me up, twist me tight, leaving me broken and forgetting that I have been delivered from this Egypt, I have been brought up from the ashes, I have been carried on the eagles wings and I have been bought back.

While I entertain thoughts of failure, disappointment, doubt, fear and worry I leave no room for his thoughts of me.

As the waves crashed and the sun began to set I felt those threads come loose.
Those threads of lies.
I felt them release and make way for threads of truth, freedom and grace to be rewoven into my tapestry of hope.
Thankfulness rushed through my veins. Thankful that we serve a God who loves us when we are His enemy. For a God who continues to pursue us when we are deaf, blind and disobedient. I grew thankful that we serve a God who has more loving thoughts about us then every grain of sand on the earth. I grew more thankful that we love a God who is passionate about us. He doesn't grow weary. He is steadfast.
 photo IMG_7304_zps3f7a77c7.jpg Steadfast.
Firmly fixed in place: immoveable. Not subject to change. Firm in belief, determination, or adherence: loyal.

This is our God.

Though at times I stumble and I lose my footing and I welcome in those unwelcome guests, Jesus is there. Unwavering in his grace and love. Loyal to His promises. His freedom immovable.

I am thankful that God met me on this day, on the beach in Santa Monica. I am thankful I had an ear to hear and that I responded.

He purchased us all for a high price. Why? Because we are immeasurably valuable to Him. We are His prized possession. We no longer have a need to serve those unwelcome guest, we have the authority and the right to kick them out. And so I did. Those threads of lies unraveled and I left them at the beach that day.