Run So as to Win

4 Apr

Run so as to Win - Shea Olson

The early morning is my favorite part of the day. As hard as that first step out of bed is, I’ve always been a morning person, ready to run and ready to conquer what lies before me in the next 24 hours. Dressing in my workout clothes, lacing up my running shoes, and gulping a quick glass of water, I step out into the morning air while most of the city sleeps. With the crisp winter air, the smell of fresh rain in the spring, the dew ready to evaporate in the summer heat, or the lingering smell of burned autumn leaves, each step awakens my body more and welcomes the freshness of another day.

And, here it is, another day. Another day of something, of life, of love, of the mundane, of pain, of what we make it. What will this day bring? For most, it will bring another day of work, a day of building relationship with a friend, a day of studying, a day of smiles and potentially tears, and a day of buying the liquid awakening for your body in the cup of coffee you just purchased. With the only noises on a quiet morning being the pattern of my foot hitting the pavement and my breath getting deeper, I find my heart opening to what will come before me, of what my day will be.

In the quiet of the morning, I am able to turn my focus on how I will face the day. I am married, work full-time, am part of The Heart of the Matter, am in a book club, and have friends. But most of all, I am Catholic. I love Christ and His Church. Through the vision of my love of Christ and the Church, my day will be formed. In the relationships I build, the ordinary emails answered at work, and with the clerk at the check-out line in the grocery store, I am daily called to be like Christ, to love and to humbly serve others before myself. This does not mean I do not fail or that I always do it well. But, this is what I am running toward and what I desire each day.

For each day forms a month, and months form a year, and many years (hopefully) form a life. And, at the end of this life, I will face Christ on that Judgment Day. He will look straight into my soul and know how well I loved, or did not love, and how well I served, or did not serve. And when that happens, I long for Him to tell me, “You have completed well and have finished the race and have kept the faith. I will award you the crown of righteousness, and not only to you, but to all who have longed for my appearance” (1 Timothy 4:7-8). As I approach my apartment door after my run, my day begins and I am ready for what will come.

-Shea Olson

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4 Responses to “Run So as to Win”

  1. Tia Ali April 4, 2012 at 2:16 pm #

    Shea,
    Though I am not a runner, you make me want to join you physically and spiritually.
    Thank you for an incredible image.
    AliO

    • shea April 10, 2012 at 12:01 pm #

      Thank you, AliO! I daily have to remind myself of this image – not the easiest in the morning hours!
      May you be blessed in His Easter grace: Shea

  2. maryethogan@gmail.com April 4, 2012 at 2:23 pm #

    Great article Shea 🙂 I wish I were more a morning person – b/c there is something beautiful about the morning – almost sacred. Our day is like the liturgy – it has it’s proper parts, only to lead us deeper into the mystery of life. I feel often I miss the morning as an important part of my day to lead me deeper into life and love. This is a good reminder for me to make it more sacred 🙂

    • shea April 10, 2012 at 12:02 pm #

      So glad that this article can be used as a reminder for you, Mary. The beauty of the morning definitely helps reveal the beauty of the rest of the day. But, each day is what you make it – and how you respond to His grace in each part of that day.
      May you be blessed in His Easter grace: Shea

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