Today’s word: Run
Defined: run-to depart quickly; take to flight; flee or escape:
to run from danger.
What it means to me: To run is my escape plan, my exit strategy, to run is to race headlong into the thing that will save me.
One of my earliest memories is going to the lake with my father. I couldn’t even tell you the kind of car he drove, but I remember it was white and had dark red vinyl-like seats that would stick to my skin in the summertime. We would race around the curvy switchback roads that looped around the lake and eventually, we’d park near the shore. This lake, somewhere in east Texas, was mostly surrounded by wooded areas. It was always my job to bring the bag of snacks from the car. We usually got a can of soda and a bag of chips each. I didn’t get a lot of junk food, so this was a treat.
Dad would find a nice, big rock to sit on and fish, while I explored within a reasonable distance. If the day was really hot day, we’d both jump in the water. I always wore my swimsuit under my clothes, just in case.
The day that sticks in my memory the strongest, happened when I was about six years old. We were there several weeks after the lake had flooded. My dad showed me the line of debris and how the ground was a different color where the lake had grown and shrank back down. It left behind, piles of decaying, broken tree limbs everywhere.
For some reason, this environment had created a perfect place for lizards. They were everywhere. I was delighted at all the little scurrying creatures. Everywhere I stepped, there was another one scampering away. I’m not sure how long I’d been tracking and chasing lizards when I realized I was in the woods and I couldn’t see the lake.
I tried to go back the way I’d come, but nothing looked familiar. I knew if I could just get back to the water, I could find my dad, but it seemed like the more I walked, the stranger everything looked. I climbed up on a large, felled tree to get a look around, but it caved in on me put a pretty good scrape down my leg.
First, I saw the blood, and then I felt the pain. Then came the tears. Through the tears, I finally screamed “I want my daddy!”
And he must have heard me, because I heard his voice calling my name. I remembered that my dad had been wearing a red shirt. I stared in the direction I’d heard my name, and through the trees and underbrush I saw a little red speck. It was him.
I ran. I ran as fast as I could run. I didn’t stop until that red dot turned into my dad’s shirt. I ran until I was in his arms.
I honestly can’t remember if he was angry or even what was said. All I knew is I was okay, because I made it back to where I was safe and loved.
I think about this memory often, as it is the perfect example of my dependence on my heavenly Father. All I have to do is cry out, and I am rescued.
Takeaway: There is someone bigger, stronger, smarter, and braver than me, that is standing and waiting for me to run to the safety of those strong arms. I can run to my Father when I am scared, confused, hurting, wounded, and lost. I am unimaginably loved no matter what I’ve done or how long I’ve been wandering in the dark.
Today’s goal: Today I will run. When I am stressed, I will run to my only source of peace. When I am angry, I will run to the one who understands. When I feel afraid, I will run to the one who shelters me. As soon as I feel overwhelmed or anxious or worried I will run to my Father who loves me and only wants to comfort me.
Affirmation to go: Song Lyric: “I’m no longer a slave to fear. I am a child of God.”