After so many months of training, prioritizing, discomfort, and sacrifice, I finally reached the opportunity to accomplish my goal. I was so excited!
The first part of the marathon was great! I was pumped full of adrenaline. The pace team I chose was slower than my average. Met all kinds of friendly people, also pumped full of adrenaline. We were running around in shorts, able to see our breath that chilly morning. Yes, runners are crazy.
I have experienced “the wall” before. But around mile 17 a different sensation overwhelmed me: a truly horrible darkness. I recognized the darkness. And I allowed myself to remember…
There was a time where I looked death in the eye, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I was standing on the edge of hell. I could barely take steps, and felt it was impossible for me to continue living. I faced the essence of evil, and felt complete desperation.
It was a time I wish I never experienced. It was a time words will never effectively describe. It was a time I never wanted to or thought I would experience again.
And there I was. Running a marathon. And for some reason that spiritual darkness surrounded me, and I couldn’t escape. I whispered, “God got me through that; he can carry me through this!”
Then I noticed a runner, lying in the grass, rolling around on his back, holding his head. I stopped and asked if I could call someone for him. His responses were not connecting, so I ran up the street to alert a volunteer, who immediately went to him. Continuing on my run, I realized even when facing spiritual distress, I can still help others. And then the darkness was gone.
I know a number of you may hold the opinion that it was just the wall. There is zero doubt in my mind that it was spiritual. By the way, I did hit the wall a few miles later.
After crossing the finish line, my husband held me as I cried. I was high on endorphins and beyond happy at my accomplishment and that I reached my goals. At the same time, I was reeling from the horribleness I never expected. The evilness, the death, the hell, I would never wish anyone to face. But if Jesus will carry me through, I will follow.