Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Running the Race...

I am currently engaged in what is likely the most difficult thing I've ever challenged myself to. It's hard, grueling even. It's rewarding, yet takes more of me than I ever imagined possible. It's fulfilling, yet has stripped away much of the wall I had built around myself. It's beautiful and ugly all at once.

I am training for a mini marathon that will be held on April 24, 2010.

I am not a runner by nature. I am nowhere near it, if truth be told. Sadly, I've spent the past years (lots of them) sitting on the sidelines, feeling as though I wasn't worth being in the race at all... any kind of race.

But no more.

In the past couple of years, God has healed so many hurts in my heart and my life. He has truly renewed in me a steadfast spirit (Psalm 51). He has taken hurts from my past and allowed them to be used for good now. He has restored me. He has placed people in my life that have taught me that it's okay to be real, and that I can risk being vulnerable. It's been slow and painful, yet it's been beautiful. I feel whole.

Many of you know that in my past is sexual assault/abuse. I've never talked about it here, but I feel the need to do so now. Some of you may have walked that road as well. If so, know that you are not alone. Know that healing is possible and worth the work! Part of my journey has caused me to doubt myself, and that's one of the greatest parts of healing. I'm learning again the worth that God gives me through His Son. WOW... I'm amazed at how much He loves me!

This April marks 20 years since I was assaulted. In the years since that time, April has been hard to face. It brings back memories that are hard to handle sometimes, even after all of these years. A few years I have been sad, disconnected, defeated.


This year, I am whole, content, connected, ready to face the memories, knowing that they are just that.. memories. And memories cannot hurt me! So, I will run. I will run for the joy that God has restored in me. I will run for the freedom I feel in Christ. I will run to celebrate the pure joy that my family gives to me each and every day. I will run to show all other survivors that God heals all, and you are not the abuse you have endured. You are more than that. I will run to celebrate the fact that I am beautifully made in the image of the Creator of all that is and is to come.

I will run as a praise to God. Each step of that 13 miles will be a worship experience. I will run what I can, walk when I need to. And I will smile, knowing that God has brought about more healing and restoration in me than I ever dreamed possible.

Pray for me. I'm afraid. I doubt my ability to finish, yet I will persevere.

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hunders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God". Hebrews 12:1-2


Tooz said...

Holly, I'll be rooting for you.

Kimmie said...

You go girl. 13 miles of prayer time, Yahooo!

mama to 8
one homemade and 6 3/4 adopted

Jo Ann said...

You are more than a runner....you are a teacher, a mentor, an example, a role model, a survivor, and more than that....our wonderful daughter and God's child!!! We are so proud of you and the woman that you have become! We love you!

Matt, Sara, Parker and Lleyton Ritzmann said...

We are pulling for you.

I am sure you will do great!

The Ritzmanns

Mrs. Allroro said...

I do not doubt you can finish it. I know I can't run as far as you do.

I'm very excited for you! Thank you for your example.

KentuckyAngel (Vicki) said...

Holly, I never knew. I am so sorry. Wish I could say,never been there. You give inspiration when one thinks there is none. I have NO DOUBTS that you will finish, but if it is a line you have to cross to do so, don't feel defeat if u don't step over. You will have won just by facing this & going forward. I am very proud of you & love you lots.....thank you for your friendship, your prayer when asked. You have mine now. Always, Vicki
ps...I know I can't wait to hear of Ellie's first Easter learning of her Lord. (and the Easter bunny!)

Beret said...

Awesome! You will do great! And you will be amazed at how great you will feel when you cross that finish line.

Lydia Brown said...

Holly, knowing you, I'd say farely well, I don't doubt your ability to finish because I also know the ONE who is pushing you and picking you up and cheering louder than anyone else will for you. You can do it! I am inspired by yet another testimony of how God is working all things together for good for those who love Him! He's running beside you all the way, stopping when you have to pant for breath, brushing your knees off when you stumble, and saying "Holly, you can do all things because I'm giving you the stength to do them. You can finish this race." Who cares if you beat anyone else to the finish line? Its not how fast you run it, but how well you run it. Give your all to the One who designed your body to work the way it does. You can do it, Holly!