The Finish Line of a Marathon is a Sacred Place
In the wake of what happened yesterday at the Boston Marathon, I cannot stop thinking of the finish lines that I have crossed as a runner. But also the finish lines I have cheered others across.
You see, the last miles of a marathon are tough. Hey, who am I kidding, all 26.2 miles of a marathon are tough. I have run 4 full marathons and have lost count of how many half-marathons I have run. When you get to the final corner and can see that finish line, miracles happen. Even before you can see it, you can hear it and that roar of the crowd is the best adrenaline I have ever experienced. I have found myself able to sprint, with tears streaming down my face, searching into the crowd to see my loved ones or friends, hoping to hear them, and in awe and delight to be finished with the race. It is a miracle moment.
A marathon teaches you everything you need to know about what you are and how much you are capable of. It changes you deep inside. This is true whether you are a runner, a walker, a combo of both, or in a wheelchair.
But even more miracles are seen when you cheer for others at the end of a marathon. You see all sorts of sizes, shapes, gaits, and get-ups. You see runners crossing holding hands, runners raising money for a cause, runners wearing all sorts of odd attire. You see miracles. It is a place that is sacred and full of the hope and inspiration of all people. We are not a color or a size, or a dollar amount, or a social security number. It is all the same on the pavement. The playing field is level. We see eye to eye.
There is also a code among runners that you might not know about. What happens on the race course, stays on the race course. The deep heart life and truth conversations, the bodily functions, and the ways we encourage each other as we each are running our own race.
The volunteers who help at races are saints in human form as they get each person across and crown them with their finishers medal. The team of people from the start to the finish, the police, nurses, firemen that just help a race happen are to be acknowledged. A marathon is a long day. It takes a tribe to make it happen.
So here is what I want you to hear from me. I am a runner and I will not stop running. I am more inspired to run than ever. I will cheer at any race that I can. I encourage you to run or cheer or volunteer at a race near you so you can see what happens. I pray for those in Boston, and I pray for all of us, because we have all been injured by this. We have all been hit by the shrapnel of this event. But we are a victorious people and we are not cowards. We dust ourselves off, bind up our blisters, and get back on the road.
To Boston and to all of my running friends, let the marathon continue.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1 NIV
Diane Cunningham is the Founder and President of the National Association of Christian Women Entrepreneurs. She is a “business therapist”, plane crash survivor, author, consultant, speaker, marathon runner, and fun friend.
Find out more about NACWE and why 165 women joined in the first year at www.nacwe.org. Connect with Diane at www.facebook.com/
DianeCunningham for fun updates, silly videos, and lively conversation.
Leave a ReplyWant to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!