Everyone has a coping mechanism. Some bake brownies for personal consumption, others escape reality through episodes of Downton Abbey, and others still sew and stitch and glue and prune and create to their hearts’ content.
My coping mechanism? Training for the next big race.
So, you can imagine my feeling of panic when my doctor told me last August that I had to immediately cease all impact exercise. No road races. No triathlons. No nothing. That was six months ago, and I am still staring at four more weeks on the calendar before I can hit the pavement running again.
Sometimes, the temptation to despair is overwhelming. We already lose so much in our barrenness – our family line, our health, our societal pride, our Mother’s Day carnations – that the thought of losing one more thing, especially that thing which brings us the most temporal comfort, threatens to break us.
But losing it won’t break you. The things that we lose in this life are not the things that last, and they most certainly are not the things that save us from despair. Abandoning my sneakers has only reassured me of this truth: Neither death nor life nor things present nor things to come nor lost endorphins will separate me from the love of Christ. His gifts of forgiveness, life, and salvation do last, and they most certainly do save me from despair. They are even readily available to me today in His Word and in His Body and Blood, filling me with comfort when my coping mechanism can’t.
Still, I am really looking forward to doing jump squats again.