Tuesday 21 August 2012

"My strength is made perfect in weakness"

Running up Mastiles Lane on the way to Malham Moor
One of my  'secret paths' through the wheat field
A slight obstacle while we were running down Conistone Dib
  A comment posted by a Facebook Friend on the occasion of my birthday keeps popping into my mind.  She said "Happy Birthday young man, God must have been in a great mood the day you were born!"  Isn't that wonderful?  I love such positive thoughts, and the more I think about that particular one, the more I'm inclined to agree.  Admittedly, the old body has acquired a few irritating imperfections over the years, particularly in the eyesight and waterworks departments, but nothing that has so far prevented me from getting on with the manifold things a human body is designed to do.  I can still run, though occasionally suffering the inconvenience of cuts, bruises - or the odd broken bone - when I trip and hit the deck.  And not to mention the ignominy of running partners streaking away into the distance whilst I whistle in the bushes or behind some convenient wall.
   Yet I'm sure these wee problems of mine are as nothing compared to the vast variety of physical and mental disabilities in the hundreds of brave paralympians currently gathering for their own version of the Games in London next week, athletes who will indomitably rise  above their disabilities to give Gold medal performances. We're not told what the apostle Paul's particular 'thorn in the flesh' was, but it sure didn't stop him from fulfilling the work he was destined to do. As the saying goes...where there's a will there's a way.
    My Friend's comment came to mind again today when I was almost run down in the Supermarket by a smiling gentleman on a mobility scooter. There were elderly ladies too, nipping around with their zimmer frames, so I reached the conclusion Tuesday must be a day designated to disabled or arthritic shoppers. And I couldn't help thinking, I'm either exceedingly lucky or God was indeed in a very good mood when I came slithering into this wonderful world over eighty years ago. Similar thoughts spring to mind on bright mornings when, after a hearty breakfast, I can still lace up my trail shoes, step out the door and run 10 miles at a respectable pace through some of the most gorgeous countryside in the world. Which is what I did this last week, amongst other things.
Taken during a refreshing run past these two weirs on the Wharfe
     In the run-up to a local 10 mile race next Saturday I've been taking it comparatively easy, not that Britain's humid conditions allowed me to do much else. Bumbling is a word that best describes it, through waving woods, fields of golden corn, by badger setts and fox coverts, Dales pastures, rocky ravines and wild, sweeping moorland. I call some of my routes 'secret' insomuch as they're not legally accessible to the general public, only to local farmers, gamekeepers and landowners. I feel extremely privileged to be able to run freely in such a beautiful environment where I rarely meet another soul. Those who only churn out their miles on a conveyor belt in the sweaty, unhealthy confines of noisy gymnasiums don't know what they're missing. But please stay there!
   Steak and wine will be high on the menu this week, but very little running, in order to be in tip-top condition for the weekend race. Just hope it works!


  1. Happy running on Saturday! Love your post title - that is one of my most beloved Scriptures, and so very true.

  2. I wanna be you when I grow up:)
    Grade ONEderful

  3. I hope all goes well at Burnsall,Gordon. Hopefully some more Complete Runner vouchers for you both. Take care, have a good one!

    1. Thanks Terry, but not much hope of a voucher at Burnsall, prizes finish at M60. Unless of course I happen to be first local again!

  4. Great piece of pure positivity! Hope the race went well!