Running through Life with Thankfulness - Geneva College, a Christian College in Pennsylvania (PA)

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Faith
August 4, 2017

Running through Life with Thankfulness

I wanted to begin my run the other day, and I was soon frustrated trying to find a brand new pair of shoes I just bought. I couldn’t find them anywhere. My family is currently in the process of moving, and we are throwing away so much I thought perhaps my shoes were thrown out by mistake.

I looked all over my house, but I couldn’t find them. Eventually I gave up before angrily storming outside, running in an older, more worn pair of shoes. I began my run, becoming angrier as I went. I kept thinking about where they could be — and the money I’d wasted if I couldn’t find them.

The anger grew until a little less than halfway through my run. I made a sharp right turn, and I could feel myself losing my balance between the curb and the sidewalk. I slipped — twisting my ankle very awkwardly.

It hurt and I panicked. My heart started beating faster and faster. I wasn’t sure if I had just twisted it slightly or injured it seriously. It’s often hard to tell right away, so I stopped for a moment and walked a few steps, focusing all my attention on my right ankle to see how much it hurt.

Could it be sprained or broken, and will I have to stop running entirely for a while?

Let me pause here. It’s hard to explain how important running is in my life. I’ve been running competitively since fourth grade, and in the years since, I’ve developed a passion for it. I’ve won races, I’ve been a part of team championships, and I’ve shared in the joy of my friends and teammates who have done the same. I run year-round on the cross country team and the track & field team at Geneva College, and God has blessed me with something that’s given me joy and allowed me to focus my energy on something that I absolutely love to do.

I say this not to boast or celebrate my accomplishments or reflect in some narcissistic way on my running career. (That’s all fleeting, and no matter how well I run, it won’t matter one bit in the end.) I say this to explain just how much running means to me, how much I love it — how much I crave its never-ending thrills.

In that moment, however, I thought I might have lost it.

But something else happened in that moment too; all my anger about the missing shoes and all the frustration stopped. I didn’t care about where they were. I didn’t care about how much they cost. all I cared about was my ankle and if I would even be able to run at all.

After a few moments of walking, I started to run again, still focusing on the ankle to be sure it was okay. About five minutes later, I realized I was fine; I had only mildly twisted it.

God was teaching me lesson. I was distracted, frustrated and angry about losing a pair of shoes, and He showed me, for a moment, what it could be like to lose the joy of running entirely.

I’m thankful a little twist didn’t turn into something serious. As small as it may seem, this put things into perspective. It reminded me how thankful I am for God’s blessing of running, and it reminded me how all of God’s blessings to us are so much more important than life’s small inconveniences. Oh, and I found the new shoes the next day at my old house right where I left them. His blessings are new every morning.

Geneva College equips students intellectually, physically and spiritually for faithful and fruitful service to God and neighbor. To learn more about the transformation of a Geneva education, contact the Office of Admissions at 800.847.8255 or admissions@geneva.edu.

- Andrew Domencic ‘19