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Devotion Monday: Running Shoes

Devotion Monday: Running Shoes

Rev. Crystal March 9, 2015 0 comments
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WOVL Devotion Monday

Running Shoes by Tracie Fritcher Johnson

My daughter loves a good challenge. She excels at anything physical. She was born to be an athlete. As she has grown, her adventures in t-ball and kiddy soccer have evolved into more serious sports. And this family takes sports seriously.

Our young athlete has recently taken an interest in track. She is a good sprinter, but also loves the challenge of long distance running. Her father has taken measures to help her in whatever way he can. She has learned the techniques of breathing, attended several clinics, and purchased the all important running shoes.

The shoes alone testify that we take the sport seriously. (Might I add we made a special trip to a specialty store to find them?) While many participants will arrive at the track meet in their normal tennis shoes, our daughter will be wearing special running shoes. The benefits are clear. Her new cleats will allow her feet to grip the pavement and give her an extra advantage. Less chance of slipping, more force behind every stride, and obviously, the needed extra to be at her best. Right?

While I am not entirely convinced of the necessity of her running shoes, I couldn’t help draw a spiritual correlation between her preparations and my own. You see, I am also running a race. I have dabbled in the sport for a while now. My parents ran this race and introduced it to me at a very young age. More recently, as I matured a bit, my commitment evolved and I began in earnest to train. Like the apostle Paul, I am determined to make the finish line.

After purchasing special shoes for my daughter, I found myself wondering if I have access to spiritual running shoes. What can I ‘lace up’ that would help me grip the pavement and keep me from sliding from the track? What spiritual actions (or disciplines) might result in more power in every stride and ensure I endure ’til the very end?

Not every runner running this race will have taken measures to ensure they are at their very best. Many might not be willing to make the sacrifice. You see, running shoes can be a little costly. Despite the sacrifice involved, I am determined to take any means available to ensure I run my best.

What measures have you taken to make sure you are running your best race possible?

“Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.”  1 Corinthians 9:24

Take a few minutes to allow the Spirit to speak to you now. Are you willing to make an additional sacrifice to finish stronger? I am convinced that the end of our race is drawing near. Get out your running shoes and break them in!

(Running Shoes was adapted from Conversations, Questions, and Lessons for Spiritual Growth, a devotional written by Tracie Fritcher Johnson and available through Response to Grace Ministries at www.responsetograce.org.)

Tracie Frichner Johnson 2 Tracie Fritcher Johnson juggles numerous responsibilities. At home, she is a wife, mother of three, and finder of all things missing. At her secular job, Tracie counsels children and assists as Vice Principal at a local Christian school. Tracie is also active in ministry, serving as Leadership Pastor for Crossroads Apostolic Ministries in Taylorville, IL under the leadership of Pastors Jason and Kristin Hoffmann. Tracie has written numerous in-depth bible studies and devotionals which are available through The Pentecostal Publishing House. Tracie loves to come alongside others through discipleship and established Response to Grace (RTG) Ministries as an online platform for engaging people in apostolic bible study. She invites you to join her at www.responsetogracestudy.org or connect with her on the ministry Facebook page.

Copyright 2015 Tracie Fritcher Johnson and Crystal Schmalz Ministries

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About The Author Rev. Crystal Rev. Crystal Schmalz is a licensed minister in the United Pentecostal Church International, holds a Master of Divinity degree from Urshan Graduate School of Theology, and a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Humanities and History from Michigan State University. Crystal has served as a staff chaplain at Barnes Jewish Hospital, has completed five units of Clinical Pastoral Education, and is a member of ACPE. She served as a ministry staff leader for ACMNP in Yellowstone National Park and enjoys the beauty of God’s creation. She served on staff at Life Christian Church pastored by David Stephens doing outreach, guest coordination, youth leadership, Sunday school, and music ministry. She currently attends New Life Center pastored by Garry Tracy, and is involved in teaching Sunday school, preaching at nursing homes, teaching Bible Studies, and helping people connect to God and community. Crystal loves to spend time with her husband Luke, and her hobbies include writing, “thrifting,” eating ice cream, and playing Settlers of Catan and Scrabble with friends and family.

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