I used to run marathons and half marathons. I think I ran 8 marathons in my life and about 30 half marathons. Half marathons were way easier than a full marathon. They were half in length but about ten times easier. Actually, I probably ran way more than thirty half marathons because, in the days when I was training for my one marathon a year, I used to run fifteen miles in the countryside around our house almost every Friday that the weather was decent. A half marathon is only 13.1 miles. So why is a marathon ten times more difficult than a half, maybe really twenty times more difficult? Because my body has enough energy readily available to run 13.1 miles, but once I hit the eighteen mile mark my gas tank was on empty and my body needed to start converting body fat to energy. For some reason it didn’t seem like it wanted to do that, my body liked that fat and wanted to keep it, or so it seemed. The last eight miles of a marathon were hard physically, but more than that they were very hard mentally. My brain started yelling at me, ”STOP! You fool! You are killing yourself! It is hard to ignore your brain when it is so sure it is right😫 I never quit a marathon, but I wanted to in the worst way, and when it came time to sign up for my next one I remembered the pain, and they got farther and farther apart, (wait, is it farther or further? Oh man, this is as bad as to or too!) Anyway the marathons that I signed up for got farther and further apart. I think it has been close to ten years now since the last one I ran.
It is really no big deal on the marathons at this point in my life. But what is a big deal is living life responsibly, diligently for the sake of others, what is a big deal is living life for the Lord obediently, what is a big deal is accomplishing more with my life that matters for eternity.
Hebrews 12:1-3 Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
Living life is like running a marathon, it isn’t the physical tiredness that is the problem, it is my brain yelling at me all the time ”You are an old man!” ”You have done enough?” ”Take it easy!” ”You are so tired!” ”Come on, man, sleep in a little!”
So, I have created some lines to use in my self-talk to myself in response to my feeble, self-centered, lazy brain. ”Work hard; it won’t be long now before you are standing in front of Jesus, giving an account of the life you have lived, and you need to do some catching up!” ”It won’t be long now, only a couple of miles left; let’s sprint across the finish line!” ”Who is in charge here, you or your lazy flesh?”and my most motivational line is, ”Get with it, you lazy bag of bones, you are barely keeping up with Patty!”