Wednesday, October 5, 2011

What an idiot

So I went for a run yesterday.  I hate running.  There is absolutely nothing about it I enjoy other than it seems to make Julia happy when I do some kind of cardio workout. 

I don't get a runner's high.  On the flip side, I don't really have any muscle aches after doing it - though my knee hurts - so maybe I'm just not trying hard enough.

I do enjoy being outside.  I also enjoy the silence that can only be found at 5 AM on a path winding through the woods.

I'm not really a music buff, so I don't wear, or own, an Ipod.  I suppose I could dig up my old Walkman, but I don't think I have any working tapes left for it to play.  I might as well carry around five pound weights as they would provide the same usefulness.

Yes, this is the one I own (on the left).  I'm so high tech.

You might ask "What on Earth do you do for forty five minutes when you run?"

I pray.

It's difficult to make time to pray when you're constantly pulled in so many different directions, at least that's what I tell myself. 

I actually do pray quite often in short bursts throughout the day, but there are so many distractions I find my mind wandering.  Running and praying, being out in God's great creation is the one time I can truly focus and just let my thoughts run free.

My prayers typically start with thanking God for everything He has done in my life to bring me to the point I am today.  For those things I know and those I don't.  I confess that I am not worthy of anything, yet He still loves me and pours out His love on me. 

When I'm done acknowledging this, I ask Him to help me with whatever seems to be troubling me at the time, as well as for the areas in my life where I am constantly falling short.  After I'm done with me, I move on to Julia, the girls, my family, her family, friends, neighbors, our church, our old churches, and anything else I've heard of where prayer is needed/wanted.

As I was running and praying yesterday I was hit with a sudden revelation.  I was praying for other people, but the things I was praying for were things that also applied to me.

Nearly every prayer I was making could have my name in it instead of/in addition to the person I was praying for. 

More patience, less stubbornness, more grace, the ability to see someone else's point of view, working to be closer to the Lord, more understanding, more caring, less selfishness - they all applied to me as well.

I kept thinking about all the shortcomings other people had (in my eyes) and those were the areas I was praying for them in.  You see the problem here?  I am so deficient, yet apparently I know what's best for other people.

Additionally, my prayers tended to have the answer in them.  
Dear Lord, please help Johnny realize if he does this he will have this happen.  Help him to do this instead.

How arrogant!  Who am I to know what is going to happen?  Who am I to think I know what God has planned?

I'm nobody.  I don't know anything.

I was/am humbled.  God chose this particular morning to show me the error of my ways.  I'm sure it's neither the first time He's shown me, nor the last, but it's the first time I've truly seen it.

One of my more consistent prayers is to be a better man, husband, father, leader, and follower. 

Today, God clearly answered that prayer.


MandyE (Twin Trials and Triumphs) said...

Awesome post, Brad, and a great reminder of perspective.

On a housekeeping note, I have to say I'm glad to know someone else in the year 2011 who doesn't have an iPod. (I don't think I can claim a walkman anymore, though, although I can hook you up with some cassette tapes...HA!)

I went to an electronics store a couple of weeks ago, looking for a small sound system to go on my kitchen counter. We have a great stereo set-up in the den, but I would like to be able to listen to music while the girls are napping, and I don't want to crank up the den system to enjoy it in the kitchen.

I had in mind a small Bose-type system. But the only thing the guy could show me that wasn't a docking station was a bonafide boom box. Um, I have one of those in the back of my closet from my college dorm room. No thanks. Hahaha!!!

Melissa Ann said...

I appreciate your candor. It's a rare thing :) I love your silly posts to pieces, but this was such a blessing to hear from a man on a journey with the Lord.

Derek Aldrich said...

A very nice post from you, enjoyed reading it. Got me thinking of what our pastor has preached on the last 3 weeks, James 4:1-10.

Olusola said...

OMG! This is my first time on your blog and I do not know what I was expecting to find, but it was not this. Your post seriously blessed me. Thank you. You have a new follower

Caleb Galloway said...

Great thoughts, Brad. It is interesting when the Lord does things like that to put us in front of the mirror instead of throwing rocks at glass houses (prone to this myself). I appreciate your authenticity. thanks for sharing. -Caleb