Doing, Not Looking
I was running a good race. I was at the mile marker and only needed to stop and walk for a few seconds at a time. I was in a groove. My time for this race would be amazing. Usually, I just try to improve my own personal time. When we started, an older man with a cane went running by me. He was holding the cane as he shuffled by me. I thought well now that’s unique. Why even have a cane if you don’t need it? Then I thought WAIT, HOLD THE PHONE no guy with a cane is running faster than me. Nope! Not happening. So I stayed close and passed him. As we neared the one-mile marker, the older man ran by me again. But this time, he was struggling and scuffing his feet as he ran. He ran a little further and fell into a deep ditch and just sat there stunned. At that moment, I was faced with a dilemma. I could keep running and hopefully win a prize, OR I could stop and help the older gentleman to his feet and lose all the momentum that I had achieved. For me, it was not even a question. Of course, I would stop and lend my aid to a fellow runner. With a little help, I, puddin’ muscles, got him out of the ditch and running again. This time, I deliberately stayed behind him. As we turned a corner, the older runner stumbled again and skidded on the pavement. It took a bit, and as we once again we got him on his feet, I said something like maybe we should walk for a bit because I am tired. I wasn’t tired, but I could not stand to see him fall again. As we walked, I thought about how often in our Christian life we, become so concerned with looking good, that we forget WHY we are running. In our Christian life, helping and loving others is critical. It’s WHY we even run a race as a Christian. For that run, it was more important that I help my brother in need than that I finish with my best time ever. There will be other races, but I may not get another opportunity to serve that man in the way I did that day. I am eternally grateful that God gave me the opportunity to serve while running. He reminded me that doing good, not looking good is what is important. I wonder how often I have neglected the critical things in life because I wanted to look like a good Christian?