You are here. Where is there?

I turned 39 this past week on Thursday. Most years it is just another birthday but this year it is a little different because…

I can't wait to be 40.

Yes, I said that I can't wait to be 40. Once I turn 40, the qualifying time to run the Boston Marathon gets just a little bit easier. As a 39 year old, the qualifying time is 3:10 but as a 40 year old, the time is 3:15. Let me help explain. A marathon is 26.2 miles and in order to run the Boston Marathon, you must qualify by running a previous marathon within a certain time. The older you get, qualifying gets “easier”. A 3:10 marathon means that you run 26.2 miles in 3 hours and 10 minutes. That equates to 7 minutes and 15 seconds per mile. A 3 hour and 15 minute marathon equates to 7 minutes and 26 seconds! Folks, that is an extra 11 seconds per mile! I will take all the help I can get.

Let’s put this in perspective. My “PR” (personal record) time is 3:20, 3 hours and 20 minutes which calculates to 7 minutes and 38 seconds per mile. This means that I will need to shave at least 5 minutes off of my best time to qualify to run the Boston Marathon as a 40 year old in 2017 or beyond.

My goal is to run a marathon in each state plus Washington DC. You can learn more about my marathon running by clicking here.

Currently, I am here (3:20 marathoner) but I want to go there (3:15 marathoner).

What is it going to take to get from here to there? What is the in-between?

Recently, I spent a few days in Washington DC on business. While walking the National Mall, I came across a park bench that had the words, “You are here” on it. It got me thinking.


You are here. If here is where I am, where is there?

It is such a brutally honest statement. You are not THERE as in the past tense. You are not THERE as in the future tense.

You are here.

For some, “here” is an okay place. For others like myself, “here” is not where I want to be. In the case of my marathon training, I want to be “there” but there is much “in-between”. There will be days that I do not feel like doing a hill workout. There will be days that I do not want to do speed work. There will be days that I do not want to run at all.

But I will because I want to be “there”.

Maybe it’s your career.

Maybe it’s your marriage.

Maybe it’s your relationship with your kids.

Maybe it’s your struggle with an addiction.

Maybe it’s your financial situation.

Maybe it’s your spiritual life.

Where your “here” is, it might seem so far from the “there”.

The “in-between” might look like a 20 foot fence covered in barb wire. The "in-between" looks like the Mississippi River full of hungry alligators. The "in-between" looks likes a football field length of broken glass that you have to walk across. The "in-between" might look like an impossible task to take on.

There is hope to tackle the “in-between”. When struggles become overwhelming, there is a place that you can find comfort. This place of shelter is in God’s word…the Bible.

Let this scripture take on the unknown and bridge the gap between “here” and “there”.

James 1:12Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.

I encourage you today to persevere through the trial you are battling. Love the Lord with all that you have and He will sustain you. He will give you strength. He will fulfill His promise to you.

Do not be fooled by doubt. You do not have to stay “here”. With Jesus leading the way, you can get to “there”.

I'm praying for you,