My eyes are stinging, tears sliding past my temples into my hairline. I can feel my hair whipping wildly behind me. On the particularly bad gusts, the strands fling around my face and catch my eyes. My legs are burning, calves are screaming. The roar in my ears covers the sound of my breathing.
I’m alone. My teammates have turned around. I’m not sure why, but I decided to continue forward. At first, I smiled at the challenge. Now, my resolve is beginning to waver. I’m dying to turn around, but I also know that if I can just make it 10 more minutes, the way back will be worth it. I will have the wind pushing me.
I keep blinking back my watery eyes antagonized by the wind. A gust blows up, forcing me sideways and sucking the air away from my mouth. I turn my head right for some reprieve.
Before I left the track, the weather reported gusts up to 40 miles an hour. I don’t doubt that now. I am halfway up the first hill, gusts tossing me sideways and back again. The crest of the hill is coming up underneath my feet.
I’m at the top now, and for a moment, I just have to stop to take it all in. It’s beautiful out here. It’s terrible, but so beautiful. I marvel at the power God gave the wind; the power to move me and steal my breath. The wind is not tired, but I am. It will continue to blow effortlessly, and I am just here momentarily.
I glance down at my watch. I have 4 minutes until I reach my halfway point. I press start and ease my legs forward. This time I let the wind move me. I try my best to feel the strength of it. With every gust, I press forward with the knowledge that I am being strengthened mentally and physically.
I am running up the crest of the second hill, chest heaving and muscles aching. Stay focused. You are so close. As I reach the top, I stop one more time. I stand, facing the wind. I feel the cool air blow against my face. I feel my hair dancing behind me. The joy is indescribable.
I turn with my back to the wind. It is no longer shoving me backwards; instead, it is propelling me forward. I am moving with the power of the wind, resting in it’s overwhelming strength.
I realized that running into the wind can be like the trials we face in life. It’s exhausting and seemingly never-ending. In the face of hardship, we just want the pain to stop. Turning around and giving up becomes so tempting.
Hebrews 12:1-2 “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus,the pioneer and perfecter of faith.”
If we let Him, God will strengthen us through the wind. He will mold us, shape us, and grow us. When the hardships come, we need only set our eyes on Jesus. We keep the faith because we know that God will not fail us.
Trust that when you hold onto God as your strength, you will turn around at the right time, and you will have the Mightiest Wind at your back.