I went running on the track in Winnemac Park this morning. First time I’ve run on a track (besides being forced to in middle school which I don’t count). I expected the surface to be more like a rubbery asphalt… but it was loose fine gravel. As I was running, I kept getting those particles in my shoe and I’d kick up the dirt and it would hit my legs. There were a few other people running on the track as well. These were people who were in shape and quite frankly lapped me multiple times. Yes, I am in the best shape that I’ve been in probably since middle school (hmmm… last time I was on a track), but I’m still very much out of shape in general.
Perhaps this is a good time to insert the back story. In small group we were talking about rabbinical traditions… or something. Honestly, wasn’t paying super close attention, my mind was otherwise engaged. I do know that I had never heard the word “rabbinical” used that much ever… not even just one setting… but ever… combined. So what I remembered this morning about this discussion was a kind of blessing/well wishing to the disciple following a rabbi- May you be covered in the dust of your rabbi. Meaning, may you follow him so closely that the dust he kicks up while walking gets all up on you. Pulling that into our reality- Are we following Jesus so closely that we’re covered in his dust…
Okay, so back to my running. The only dirt I had on me was from me. The others were lapping me, far away, or offset (inside vs outside of track). Even if I wanted to be following them, I had no chance of getting there dust on me. So, how am I following Jesus? Yes, I’m going in the same counter clockwise direction… but… I’m offset and so focused on my crap that I don’t pick my head up much to see where He is. I’m just running (slowly) in a circle counting the laps till I think I’m okay. That is not what following Jesus should look like. Sure, there are times when this happens to everyone… I assume… but that doesn’t make it good. Following Jesus is about being right where He is- doing what He’s doing, praying what He’s praying, feeding who He’s feeding, resting while He’s resting. It’s not about keeping my head down and just plugging along in what I think is the right direction.
So the question is- how do I fix this? Do I wait for Him to lap me… again… and try to keep up when I see Him go by? Do I keep plugging along hoping that I’ll get the strength and endurance to catch up to Him? Or is there some other way? I don’t know. I do know that I’d rather His dust than my dirt. I’m so sick of my dirt.