When I was in 8th grade I ran track. I was never very good at it, we had a lot of girls way taller, faster, stronger, but I was pretty quick. I remember sprinting like my life depended on it at track meets. There wasn't time to look left or right and certainly not back when you were trying to win (or in my case not be last!).
Last week a friend of mine asked me how it was being back home. I told her that being busy thanks to my job and my kids, was more of a blessing than I could've realized. I didn't have time to look left or right... or back. I was sprinting. God truly does know what we need and provides.
Not long after that conversation, in fact it might have been the very next day, I had a few hours of down time. Not much but a little with a quiet house, happy kids playing, not much going on. And I started looking around, we were outside in the driveway and I looked left... no Emily and Alice, I looked right, no Angela and Will, and then I looked back and hyperventilated. I just missed my people, my old life.
It was at that point that I clearly understood the verse we've all heard, 1 Corinthians 9:24, "Don't you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win!" or Philippians 3:14 "I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus."
I've determined that my current busyness is God-purposed. In other words, I'm almost not choosing it, it was destined for me. Prayer is powerful and not long after we got here both of our current bosses/partners told us they had been praying for us. (They were praying for "someone" but that someone turned out to be us.) So the question for me became, how do I meet with God when I'm not able to meet with him like I used to in Dallas.
In Dallas, I had the most amazing group of women I met with on Wednesday nights since I joined Northwest Bible in 2008. For six years, Wednesday nights were my spiritual chiropractic adjustment. My Bible studies kept me in the word, my group kept me on my toes and I grew in my faith. So much so God moved me right out of there. It's hard not to look back and miss our church too...
So recently I've determined that getting up in the mornings is an absolute must for me. Even if it's just 15 minutes before pitter-patter of little feet, I have to meet with Jesus. My Bible is on the coffee table, my computer for my online study (written and recorded by my cousin - so cool), and whatever beverage I need to wake up. I really try every morning of the week to do this.
As I've stewed on this verse "Run to win!" I picture Jesus at my bar waiting for me, I know it's silly, but when I can't meet with him, I feel like I've missed an important conversation that keeps me focused on the task at hand - right now. Not looking back or trying to see too far ahead, but right here in the present.
I believe my task right now is best described in Proverbs 27:17 "As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another." We are running to win, we can't look left, right... or back.