Monday, September 19, 2011

Capital City River Run Half Marathon

Well...I DID IT! I ran my first half marathon yesterday and it was AWESOME! I put all of that training (12 weeks, 121 miles) to the test and it paid off! Here are the results...

Capital City River Run Half Marathon 2011
Miles: 13.1
Time: 2:09:22
Pace: 9:53
Place: 42 out of 80 in my age group

I am so thrilled to have accomplished this goal. All year I have wanted to be able to do this and to finally have it under my belt feels amazing!

Saturday night, Kenny prayed over me and yesterday morning before the race, I knelt in prayer again and read the scriptures. I was reminded, of course, of my scripture memory verse (I can do everything through Him who gives me strength) and also of Isaiah 40:31 which says, "Those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." I clung to these promises throughout my run, and in Jesus' name, I was victorious! Even when my knees began to feel the burn of the run and I had to slow my pace, I just continued to lift up my prayers and praises for the beautiful, perfect weather, and the opportunity and blessing to run this race, and He helped me get through to the finish line! God is so GOOD!

I'm continuing to celebrate today by taking my first day off in 6 MONTHS from work, and enjoying a rainy day with my hubby! It's going to be GREAT!

Praise God for everything He has done! I am so blessed!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Scripture Memory Verse #18

Just a quick post to share my 18th (wow!) Scripture Memory Verse for 2011...

Philippians 4:12-13, NIV
"I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation...I can do everything through Him who gives me strength."

This verse is PERFECT for my race, not to mention life in general. I know that in God is where I find my peace, happiness, and contentment. I will be keeping this as my personal mantra while I run hard on Sunday!

12 weeks of training = 121 miles of running (134 as of Sunday)! Feeling victorious and ready to take on the world! Let's do this!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Decade Later

Today marks the 10th Anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks across the nation. I remember sitting in my high school computer class watching the television with fellow peers as the events of that day unfolded. It was a horrific day - one that I, nor anyone else for that matter, can ever forget.

Today I am reminded of just how blessed I am to live in this country, with all the opportunities that have been afforded to me. I am grateful for the men and women who have laid their own lives on the line for the sake of my freedom. I am encouraged by the strength of my fellow citizens who rose up out of the ashes that day, and continue to do so everyday, despite the loss and heartache suffered.

President Obama read a scripture this morning, that I will now close with - a reminder that no matter what, God is in control and His hand is upon us...

Psalm 46:1,7 (NIV)
"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress."

God Bless America, my home, sweet home.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Happy September!

It's finally here - September - YAY! I've been so looking forward to this month, as it officially marks the start of college football, cooler weather, changing colors, and a new season, which ultimately makes for a fresh start! Thank God for new beginnings!

I am writing from my place up north. Hanging out, listening to the crickets and grasshoppers through the window, while my MSU Spartans are playing their first game on the television...this is the life! It's nice to be up north and have the extended weekend ahead of me. I am in need of a little downtime as things at home have been so busy. I'm looking forward to some time of refreshment and relaxation. And speaking of chilling out, I've attached a few pictures of a recent hike my husband and I took last weekend. Nature is such an amazing way to get away from the strife of life and get some breathing room. It really makes a difference in my life when I take the time to get outside and enjoy God's creation!

I've been doing a lot of reading lately. I managed to get through all of Margaret Feinberg's books this summer, which were fantastic - I highly recommend for those hungering to hear God's voice and have a more intimate relationship with Him. I also re-read "Captivating" for the fourth time. That book is what helped me to fall in love with Jesus all over again in June of 2006 and inspired me to recommit my life to Him. I try to make a habit of reading it once every year, just as a little reminder of that special time in my life. In terms of fiction, I just finished "The Help" and absolutely LOVED it! It was a great story and very encouraging for those of us who hope and dream for more and better in our lives. Reading has greatly helped me to take the time to just chill in the evenings after a busy day and has given me something to look forward to at the end of the day. I just picked up two more books and hope to read those over the weekend!

I've been continuing to run. I'm a little over two weeks away from my big race. I can't believe how fast time is going and that it's less than 20 days away! I am incredibly excited, but also nervous about what race day will entail. Above all, I've been praying for strength, endurance, and God's grace from head to toe. I know that in Christ, I can do all things. He will make me victorious and help me to finish strong - in this I put my faith and trust!

With it being the beginning of a new month, that means it's time for my new scripture memory verse (#17)...

1 Thessalonians 4:7, The Message
God hasn't invited us into a disorderly, unkempt life but into something holy and beautiful — as beautiful on the inside as the outside.

I happened upon this verse and it just struck me as so simple and yet profound. The life God calls me to is a life of holy beauty. So often I settle for less, but He desires the absolute best for me. In no way do I deserve His love, grace, or mercy, but He willingly extends His hand to me and invites me into this glorious adventure with Him. When I get to Heaven, I hope and pray it will be said of me that I always said "Yes" to God when He reached out to me. I know I've missed plenty of those moments in my life already, but I so desperately desire to be willing and obedient to Him.

Lord, give me the heart to know You, the eyes to see You, the ears to hear You. Restore, rebuild, and renew me from the inside out. Make me beautiful in Your Presence. In the mighty name of Jesus, I pray, Amen.

Here's to September...