Sunday, October 16, 2016

Some Thoughts On Sunday Mornings, Running, and Prayer

Over the last few years, Sunday mornings have become truly sacred to me.  I spend them in one of two ways - either running along the trails in one of two favorite parks, or curled up in my nook in the basement with a nourishing book and my journal.  Sometimes, I get to do both.  

What follows is a portion of my journal entry from July 3 of this summer.  I've debated for a long while whether or not to share it - I've NEVER before published something straight from my private journals - and this morning it felt right to finally do so.  The only editing I've done is to divide it into some smaller paragraphs so that it's a bit easier to read.  

But first....another cup of tea...

And as I came back down to my chair, the thought that crossed my mind was that I wish I lived in a Sunday morning sort of world.  Imagine how lovely it would be if I had this kind of time every single day for quiet reflection, for communion with God.

It would be lovely.

But it wouldn't be the real world.

By the way, when the Urgent Care Doc told me I couldn't run for 2-4 weeks, my 1st thought was, "But that's how I talk to God."  It was an interesting gut response, and one that I think bears some attention to.

I don't actually pray during most runs - I listen to books or podcasts.  I do pay attention to my surroundings, and I like to capture the special things (Morning light, the lake, the stone people) in pictures.  I take selfies to celebrate the successes or to just record the day - making sure I'm inserted firmly into my life - or to just grab another picture of a happy me.  Each run is a success in some way, each run is a victory....over my health or over past expectations, or over my own fears....over what I thought was possible or over what I once knew was true about myself.  I love it, even when it's hard or frustrating, even when I question my sanity or why I keep going.

So while I don't pray i the traditional sense, each run becomes a prayer - a thank you for the yes I can, an appreciation for how far I've come, a challenge to continue so that I can be the best Kristin that God wants me to be.  Despite those stories in my ear or maybe because of them, this is when I'm the most present in my own body....and in the world.  It's when I'm the most focused, and it's when I'm paying the most attention.  I'm rewarded with sunrises so beautiful that they break the heart, still reflective waters that center me and calm my soul, the magic of the rock cairns, the gentle recognition of other souls on the trail, the calm presence of the trees, and the deep knowledge that yes, I can.  It's not always so deep (although Sunday mornings tend to be) but there are always at least glimmers of this.

So yes, I talk to God when I run, and He always talks to me.

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