Running the Race

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.  2 Timothy 4:7

For nine days this past August, I was caught up in a world of runners – the 125 mile Transrockies Run.  I have recently taken up trail running for my regular exercise and found myself volunteering to support this world-class event modeled after the Transalpine Run in Europe.  During the week, I also was able to take a couple of days off from volunteering and run day two and day four of the six day run, a 13.5 mile and a 14 mile day respectively, basically two half-marathons.  Both days were the “shorter” days of the run, but were also over mountain passes “straight up” and “straight down” so the shorter distance was made up in pain.  On both days there were moments when I did not think I could complete the first half of the run on the uphill side (I have found I like “technical” downhill – that is, downhill over rocks and rough terrain, rather than uphill).  Fortunately I had a partner on the run who favors the uphill and he tied a bungee cord to my belt and pulled me when I was having my most difficult time (out of breath, out of energy, major cutbacks up to and above the tree line!).  Once we were up and over the top, my energy returned, and I was able to run on the downhill side and on the flats to the finish for the day.

Everyone has their specialty, and fortunately we have partners, various people God has placed in our lives who can come along side of us, and even pull us when we feel we cannot go on.  Going to college to start or complete degree programs (if life interrupted as it does in so many ways) is like running a marathon.   For adult students it is perhaps an uphill marathon given that they have work, family, church and various other competing commitments.  The Holy Spirit provides spiritual renewal as we lean on Him.  Family and friends may complain from time to time, but try to give support and encouragement on night after night of eCollege threaded discussions, homework and missed family time.  The staff and faculty at CCU desire to make this a blessed time of growth and transformation in academic excellence and spiritual formation, and your fellow cohort (class) mates become built-in partners who share in the joys and the agonies of theories, deadlines and presentations.  Many become lifelong friends and business or mission associates.

Ecclesiastes 4:12 says “…a cord of three strands is not easily broken.”  Intertwine yourself with God and with people to whom you can be accountable and who can encourage you when you find yourself out of breath and out of energy on your way to completing your degree.  Step by step as you run the race the course(s) will fly by.  Finally you will reach the finish line to receive your degree.  As you look back, you will remember the good times and the hard times with satisfaction and a sense of pride and gratefulness to God and to all those partners who assisted you along the way.  Then you can turn to the future and run with confidence the good race that God has set before you.

By Dr. Mellani Day – Dean, Business and Technology Division, CAGS