I snapped this pic after my run today. A joy to be out. A joy to be done. My day off, I'd waited til after the kids left for school this morning. With the sun up over the horizon warming the 8 degree skies, wind at 10+ mph, & a real feel of -3, I layered up appropriately. Out I went to run the snow plowed, yet patchy streets of our subdivision with the assurance I had the right gear for the conditions.
For the first few minutes in the sub freezing outdoors you wanna think, "Agh, I overdressed. I'm gonna get too hot before I'm done." Then you remember two things: first, you got dressed where it was 60 degrees warmer; second, you always feel this way until the cold presses in through your layers. Wait a few minutes before turning home to shed some gear.
Sure enough a mile or so down the road the warmth you felt yields to the weight of the cold. Your flesh is screaming the reality, "It's really cold out here, Yehu!" Experience speaks to your flesh again before you are tempted to turn home, "Give it a bit more & you'll warm up."
And, if you've dressed right, you do warm up. You feel great. Cold face, yes. Chilled a bit here & there, at times. Yet generally, just right. Run you do, picking your steps through the snow & ice.
Then, just when things seem to be going so well, you face another force. One more fierce than the cold. "You conquered 8 degrees? Ha! Wait until you meet me," it growls.
You turn into the wind.
The wind. Bites. Cuts. Hurts.
All the warmth from being layered right. All the self-congrats for choosing well & running strong. All are laughed at by the wind.
You push through. You steel your will. You suffer on.
No matter how you feel you have gotta get your miles. And if it's too tough to get all your miles, you at least have to get home. These conditions will hurt you.
Isn't life like that?
You bring your best plans. Your best stuff. Your best prep. You are up to the challenge. You are ready to conquer.
Then you turn into the wind.
The fierce, frozen, cutting, angry wind.
You question yourself. You question God. You second guess. You doubt. You cry. You complain. You stumble.
But you gotta keep going. You can't stay out there in the cold. You gotta reach the peace & warmth of home. You press on.
"No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us." Romans 8:37