Sky Ranch > Sky News, Leadership, The Fellowship
4/30/21

Race Day - Naomi Murrell

Race day is two weeks away.

After three years of attempting marathon training plans, I am so close now to meeting my goal of running 26.2 miles.

I used to be embarrassed to tell people that I have attempted marathon training 4 times but never completed it. I was starting to doubt that I would ever do it, or worse, I was starting to fear other people would think I would never do it. Looking back I can pinpoint the exact causes of my failure for each attempt; lack of desire, lack of discipline, lack of belief, injury etc. But I truly believe I was meant to accomplish this now. I have learned so much about what it takes to run 26.2 miles, mentally, physically and emotionally. There is a lot of pain that comes with the experience to say the least. Endurance is the key.

Each attempt I made at training for a marathon, I found a new answer to the question “what is it going to take for me to become the kind of person who can run 26.2 miles consecutively?”

Here are some of the answers I have come up with in the last 4 months…

1) It means being willing to run alone

2) It means being okay with the struggle

3) It means being willing to feel pain

4) It means saying no to sleeping in

5) It means running when you don’t feel like it

6) It means saying no to late nights

7) It means limiting desserts

I am two weeks away from race day, and I have worked hard to be capable of the things listed above.

As I reflect on the kind of athlete I have become, someone who is able to run long and far, I can’t help but see the parallels between running a marathon and being sanctified over the course of our lifetimes. But this time the question is; “what is it going to take for you to become more like Christ”?

The answer to this question varies with the season God has us in but I am thankful to say the Lord is opening my eyes to ways He has been shaping me through the Fellowship Program at Sky Ranch. Here are some of the answers I have come up with in the last 8.5 months…

1) It means pursuing people who are different from you

2) It means saying yes to living with 6 roommates

3) It means not having things my way

4) It means believing the best about people even when the evidence seems contrary

5) It means choosing to trust people regardless of perceived risk

6) It means asking hard questions and resolving conflict

7) It means letting others hold you accountable

8) It means following others’ ideas when I think mine are better

I am seven years into the pursuit of Christ and the Holy Spirit has worked hard to transform me into the kind of person described above. And He isn’t done yet.

The Lord has a way of convicting me in the kindest of ways. I am thankful. I am hopeful that at the end of this year, the version of me that people will see is someone who looks a little more like Christ.

- Naomi Murrell