Yesterday was the half-marathon. It rained the ENTIRE time. And it was cold. I could not sleep the night before. Weird, but I was worried about the rain and cold and wondering if I would actually be able to finish.
My brother, Paul, and his family showed up on the race course around mile 7. It was so amazing that they came out in that awful weather and waited on the sidewalk for us. He had his camera wrapped in plastic and took a few pictures, including the one above. He then sprinted up the sidewalk and took more pictures. They stayed with us for a couple of blocks before leaving. It is the best part of the race except...
We came home and I soaked in a hot, hot bath. It seemed like I couldn't get warm. We had a big night last night - our annual mission fair & banquet - so I knew I couldn't rest. I had a few things to do at home and then we headed up to church around 4:30 to start getting ready for the evening. I had my son, Josh (Student Ministry Assistant), ask some students to come help and I had the mission committee and some other friends come up to help. There were so many people there helping and working. Truly, it blessed me so much. I think the mission fair was good - we had some new organizations & missionaries join us this year so that was great fun! I was sort of afraid that the cold, wet weather would deter some people from coming out but the tables were full for the banquet. Again, a blessing. The students not only helped get ready but they also served the tables. We have the most awesome students on the planet at our church! (Josh oversaw all of it and that helped me so much!)
Then there was the program. Some of our runners came and we presented giant checks for 2 of our fundraising projects - the 2 that are local. Two of our runners spoke about what it meant to them to be running for the causes. Most of us were wearing our medals. Oh yeah, there was no doubt that I was wearing my well-earned medal! We got to celebrate what we did this past year - what God did in us and through us! How blessed we are to be called to join Him on mission. Our friend, Tyler, shared a testimony about how God used him on mission and how he and his wife continue to follow God's purpose for them, in part, as a result of that. He did an amazing job - he made laugh and cry and encouraged us all. Well, maybe I should just speak for me. He encouraged me. Johnny closed my challenging us to be on mission in 2012. It was a great night. Really, even thinking about it now makes me emotional.
God has blessed above and beyond what I could ask or imagine - just like His Word promises. This blog post cannot nearly do justice to how fabulous yesterday was. I didn't win the race or even come close but I finished within what I hoped. I don't know what I thought last night would be like but all the people who prepared in advance for the night (Julie H is the BEST!), came early and helped, who participated in the fair, who spoke, who cooked, who served, who lived on mission last year, who came last night have caused my cup to overflow. Though my muscles are sore today, my heart is full. I feel blessed. I am blessed.
Serving the King,