Run no. 45 – The blessing of an unknown route


Distance: ?? miles      Time: 24’33”

It has been very rainy the last 24 hours and my usual route was highly likely to be waterlogged, so I decided to run some loops around the streets nearby. THis was something I had never done before.

As I ran up my street for the first time I experienced the rather steep rise at the end. Although only short it was quite tough and left me struggling for breath.

I ran on going round in a loop.

As I started the third circuit I realised how much I detested knowing exactly where the climbs were, the places where it was going to hurt. Somehow knowing exactly where they were and feeling the dread rising as they approached made it a deeply unpleasant experience.

It struck me that it is a great blessing in life not to know what is in front of us; to not have to live in dread and fear of certain disaster.

The future is always unknown and as such to be considered as redolent of possibility and hope.

Certainly disaster and mishap will most probably fall upon us at some point – that is the nature of our existence, but that possibility needn’t rob us of our joy in the present and our hope for the future.

Of course it is in exactly this area that Christian faith most strongly shines. It is both realistic about the reality of earthly life with its admixture of joys and sorrows, and strongly, unbreakably optimistic, in the light of eternity.

Paradoxically, it is the freedom this faith gives to not value our life in this world too highly, that enables us to live it fully; to risk; to dare; to challenge; to invest our energies in a different, fuller, brighter, eternal future.

Although we cannot and do not know the details of our earthly future (thank God!), we do know the quality, if not the detail, of our eternal future; and the Father who loves us, knows both.

‘all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be’

(Psalm 139:16)