Tiara Tuesday: Listen to your heart.

Welcome to Tiara Tuesday!  
I'm running a half marathon in 2017 and hope to share the journey along the way. 

I've spent the last few weeks researching the Disney Princess Half Marathon and that includes watching participant videos.  I cried every. single. time. a woman either ran through the castle or down Main Street, USA.  It was like I was running that race with her, cheering her on, and also a smidge jealous in one fuzzy ball of emotions.

Even little O watched a video with me of a woman running down Main Street, USA at dawn with the castle glowing in front of the lady and O whispered, "It's beautiful."

O Slice and I love some DW.
Yes it is, baby girl, yes it is. 

I've learned over the years that when the tears leak out of your eyeballs, you need to listen to what they have to tell you.  You learn so much about yourself by listening to your emotional responses.  What makes you happy?  What makes you sad?  What makes you incredibly angry and what makes you ecstatic?  These things are unique to you and can sometimes help guide you through your thought process.  

Of course, I am not saying we should rely only on what feels right.  We have seen past generations who merely felt through their decisions and we ended up with a bunch of hippies with flowers in their hair headed to California.  But, when we take the time to listen, those little moments of sheer emotion indicate important things about who we are and who we were created to be.  

Why does Disney make me lose my mind and turn me into a big pile of mush?  I have absolutely no idea.  I believe a lot of it has to do with the ideals of love, hope, imagination, and believing in something bigger than yourself--and doing it all with excellence.

I am a firm believer of doing things with excellence.  Unfortunately, there is a part of me that struggles with wanting to do things for personal glory.  Like I shared in my previous post, I love a good gold star and a pretty carrot dangling in front of my eyes.  I am very competitive and I hate having to back down once I agree to something.

Saturday's workout included a 5K on the treadmill.  
However, there is not a lot of external glory in running and lifting weights.  Sure, my clothes fit a little better and people noticed in the beginning that I lost a little weight, and my trainer used to give me high-fives at the end of the workout.  I have spent many hours on my own plugging away at the gym and in my own little world.  I know that there might be a finishers' medal and a t-shirt involved in a race, and maybe a few photos.

But other than that?  
It's a thankless process.  

The urge to use my body with excellence is still something new to me.  I've never been extremely athletic (save for a few years of competitive gymnastics many, many, many moons ago), and I've always relied on common sense and a lot a prayer to get through most situations.  Not many people can just decide to get up one morning and run a half marathon.  They have to put in the work months beforehand.  They have to decide to spend their time away from others and the demands of the day and work and push, pull, and strengthen their bodies.

I've watched a dear friend struggle to live every moment with ALS.  I've seen cancer take loved ones too soon.  I cried about Joey Feek and I've never met the lady nor listened to her music, but her story worked my nerves in some sort of way.  I know of people waiting for kidneys.  I know children battling incredible odds.  I know too many stories about people whose lives are forever changed because they are fighting their bodies.

I'm not as young as I used to be, but I'm not dead yet, either.    

Therefore, I can no longer agree to let fear, anxiety, sins, and self-imposed limitations keep me from running the race of life.

So, when I watch these stories of women running with excellence through the Happiest Place on Earth, I'm brimming with pride for them.  I'm cheering them on.  I know they have trained and worked hard and sacrificed for this event.  I see them not letting anything hold them back.  I know they have daily struggles like me, but they are trusting that their training is going to help them make it through.  

I'm telling myself that I'm going to do that, too.  I have a calling on my life and in order to do those things with excellence, I must take care of the body which I've been entrusted.     

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.   
Hebrews 12:1 NLT    

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