July 21, 2017


This post was inspired by this lovely friend's wise words. Have a read, it's worth it!

My family laughs when I ask them if they want to go running with me. They know all too well that I have a love for running hills, hiking mountains, and discovering steep terrain.

I have a thing for challenges lately. This past year has been a valley of sorts, but it's because of the valley that I've found myself climbing (both literally and figuratively speaking) mountains to find the light again. So in an attempt to climb higher, I challenged myself to make this a year of intentional singleness (an update will be coming, I promise), I started running longer and farther (and ran a 5k!), and I started praying with a truly honest and bold voice (all tucked away in my many journals).

These challenges have not only helped me climb and grow, but they've taught me that I need to continue and keep moving forward. If I stop, just as I would running, I start losing momentum and slow down. That's not to say that rests and water breaks aren't necessary, but I also know that if I linger too long, I lose sight of the finish line.

So I've been pursuing dreams I put aside years ago. And discovering new-found passions and new goals, too. I'm trying new things and learning new skills. I'm challenging myself to find life in the season I'm in, to practice gratitude on a daily basis, and to find peace in the quiet. And I've been pushing myself to find joy in the season I'm in, too.

But finding joy in the midst of the challenge is tough. I get tired and weak, trying to catch my breath and start telling myself to quit because the finish line is too far away. I get distracted easily, letting fear and negative self-talk get the best of me. I've tripped and fallen down too many times to count (and yes, that does mean I still skin my knees when I run!). But I crave the challenge because I know the reward is greater. That these tough times make me stronger and help me run this race with greater endurance and confidence.

If I don't take the initiative, if I don't put on my running shoes, I'll never go. If I don't pray and talk to God with all honesty and openness, I'll never face my fears and sins head-on. I need these challenges because I've learned that growth is greater than groaning.

And that strength is more than meets the eye. 

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© IN ITS TIMEMaira Gall