Runners try to explain why they run. Ultra runners attempt to explain why they run crazy distances, in remote places. I've tried. Now I have an answer.
This evening, while good, dear friends were here for small group, Larry tried to remember a verse in Psalms. With just enough words, we found it on line. Psalms 107:23-30. These verses describe why I run. They describe why I do many things.
Like many ventures in life, running is like doing business on the great waters. Not many go on the great waters. Those "some" see things, see wondrous things, that they wouldn't have seen otherwise. At mile 20 or 75, there are stormy winds and waves that seem unassailable, the depths of which are unseen. During many a run, I have staggered like a drunken man, although I've never been at my wit's end. And yet, each run or race has a finish line to which I have been brought.
So here's my new answer to why I run and why we as a family do some of the things we do:
Not everyone goes to the sea and does business on the great waters, but sometimes I do. Sometimes our family does. As a result, I see some things, I experience some things that are beyond explanation, beyond imagination. There is no doubt that when it's done, I'm glad I'm done. I'm glad the waters are quiet. But it is an incredible experience to have been on great waters where very few have gone. This is what I am trying to teach my children: to go out on great waters. Sometimes it can be done through running.
Some went down to the sea in ships,
doing business on the great waters;
they saw the deeds of the Lord,
his wondrous works in the deep.
For he commanded and raised the stormy wind,
which lifted up the waves of the sea.
They mounted up to heaven; they went down to the depths;
their courage melted away in their evil plight;
they reeled and staggered like drunken men
and were at their wits' end.
Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble,
and he delivered them from their distress.
He made the storm be still,
and the waves of the sea were hushed.
Then they were glad that the waters were quiet,
and he brought them to their desired haven.