I was in that dreamlike drowsy kind of sleep when I heard them…footsteps on the stairs. Not the timid “don’t-wake- Mama -who -works -second -shift” kind of footsteps. Oh no…they were the “I -don’t –give- a- damn/I’m –pissed” kind of footsteps. The bang, bang, bang in rapid succession jolted me from my sleep. It was 8 am and my daughter was outside my door, with heavy snow boots galloping across the hard wood floor. She should have been gone long before in order to make her morning class in Boston. Something was wrong so I immediately went to investigate. I discovered an angry Beth and a window view of her Toyota up to its axils in the snow dumped from last night’s winter storm. The situation was dire indeed. She had tried to dig the gray bugger out but to no avail.
Suited up with snow wear and armed with shovels we both went outside to attack the situation. Upon closer examination I realized she had attempted to cross the snow barrier left by the plow trucks instead of clearing out the path beforehand. Being a mother I so wanted to point this out to her; however the cross scowl on her face and the memory of the stairs deterred my motherly instinct. Instead I filed the idea away for later use and began to dig at the white stuff. It didn’t matter how much snow we shoveled the wheels kept spinning in place. The car was stuck in a rut. After a long while of vigorous exercise a light clicked somewhere in my daft brain and illuminated the root of the problem. “Traction, you idiot….the wheels aren’t getting traction!” With this revelation, and a few scoops of salt pellets under the front wheels had Beth and her Corolla on the way to the big city.
My life is like Beth’s car. I’m stuck in rut and I can’t seem to get out. I hate the hell out of it! It’s the ultimate love/hate relationship. I hate it and yet I keep doing the same thing over and over again. I’m like the spinning wheels of her Toyota. I wish there were some concoction I could throw to magically free my imprisonment. However, I’m bright enough to know there are no quick and easy fixes. Damn, sometimes I hate to listen to reason! Just once in my life could I please have E-A-S-Y! Is that too much to ask? We all know the answer…
The answer to my dilemma “is indeed” simple; however it will require work and lots of it to propel me from the rut. Work will be the salt that creates traction to get out of this mess and I must be ready and willing to put forth the exertion required. I will get out of my rut the same way I got in by repeating something over and over until it becomes habit. It’s never easy substituting bad habits with good. It takes discipline… plain and simple. Ruts are never dug by one turn of the tire but by the spinning; however the spinning begins with one turn.
Last year at this time I was in the middle of training for a half marathon. I ran faithfully almost every day. I watched what I put in my mouth. I drank lots of good fresh water. I tried to go to bed at a decent time in order to get 7 to 8 hours of sleep. I tried to cross train by biking, hiking, racquetball, walking my puppies…anything that was fun and kept me moving. This was the rut to be in!
Now I still watch what I eat. I watch as I stuff donuts, cookies, brownies and chips and then wash it all down with soda. I sit up late and end up falling asleep in front to the television. My cross training now consists of Face-booking which is fun but not profitable in excess. As a result of such crap habits I’ve gained a good ten pounds and my fat ass can barely survive a mile run. What happened to 13.1 I could do last year! I’m ashamed and embarrassed, and I’ve wallowed in self-pity, like a pig in mud, for way too long.
My plan is to pick just one thing to change and with God’s help I will discipline myself to repeat it until it once again becomes a part of my life. After that success I’ll send another bad habit to hell by replacing it with something good. I can’t do this on my own because I know I am weak and will cave to temptation. I know I’ll need some supernatural strength to get back up when I fall. Luckily, I’m blessed with knowing the God of the supernatural so I’m going to ask Him for help.
With this settled in my mind the next question is this: Where do I start? Hmmm…perhaps…my running…I’ll keep you posted…
Verses I plan to use to strengthen and encourage me: (They are short so they can be my mantra when working out)
God has not given me the spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love and self-discipline. [II Timothy 1:7]
The Lord my God holds my right hand; He is the Lord, Who says to me, Fear not; I will help you! [Isaiah 41:13]
Because the Lord God helps me, I will not be dismayed; therefore, I have set my face like flint… and I know that I will triumph. [Isaiah 50:7]
God’s grace is sufficient for me, for His strength is made perfect in weakness. [II Corinthians 12:9]
I can do everything God asks me to with the help of Christ who gives me the strength and power. [Philippians 4:13]
I trust myself to stand fast in the grace of God. [Acts 13:43]