Sunday, February 23, 2014

Are You Able To Run The Race With Perseverance?

Miss you so much. Don't know if I can handle next year without you. #brother

This was Clarissa's face book post on June 20, 2013.
It's the picture of them on the first day of school; his Senior year. 

Elijah had gone on a trip the day after graduation.
We all missed him.
Boot camp was coming and we knew we weren't prepared.
He rarely left home.
His presence always here.
He wasn't one for sleepovers; preferring his bed to others.
Little did we know.

Clarissa and Thomas have devotions for Youth Group.  The topic; Perseverance. 
With the Olympics permeating much of our awake time; perseverance has been on the mind.
Story after story has been shared of an Olympian's challenging journey to reach the ultimate goal of the prestigious Olympic team; and ultimately a Gold medal.  

         As I listen to their thoughts and working through bible verses I think of how Clarissa has needed to persevere. She lives with a severe case of asthma and allergies. She has missed more and more school each year because her medicine is not adequate enough to keep her symptoms at bay. At the beginning of July her puppy was hit by car and died in my arms before she got home. 

It was heart wrenching for her. She had researched puppies that were safe for her and her asthma and saved her money to buy this little puppy. She had cared for and nurtured him since he was born. And now; in a moment he was gone. 

       Just weeks later she would endure the challenge of her life as I slowly climbed the stairs to wake her to tell her her beloved, older brother was called home to be with the King of Kings. Her brother, who was her mentor, friend and confidant. In a single sentence, I was shattering this young, precious girl's world. 

      Then came the diagnosis of cancer for her father, and I tell you, she was not surprised. 
She said she knew.
 Back when the growth became apparent. 
She would think; he needs to have that taken off. It's not a cyst. It's a tumor. 
She was a rock and asked specific questions. She rallied to this next blow. 
   Her face book continues to demonstrate where her strength comes from. She minces no words in expressing her feelings. Though sometimes I wonder at the bravado; and does she need a break? A break from the pain and the uncertainty. The pressure of honors and AP classes. Working, instrument practice, the demands of younger siblings and grief as her constant companion. 

  Thomas has lost one of his best friends. 
His dreams and hopes built together on mutual love for this country and the freedom to serve. 
A faith shared. 
An eternal bond.

So who better to speak on perseverance than Clarissa and Thomas.
 I applaud them for using their experiences to drive an important discussion. 

We may not be Olympians. But we are in a race. 
Time is ticking and life's journey continues. 

What is it that you need to persevere through? 
Are you equipped? 
What is in your tool box?
Most Olympians persevere through a course well marked out.
 Rehearsed, studied and ingrained.

Our course is well marked out. We just can't see the course. But there is One who does. 
And my trust is there. 
Elijah has stepped into eternity and he is now a part of that great 
Cloud of Witnesses spurring us on until that Great Day. 

Hebrews 12:1
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses,
 let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. 
And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

May you know that you're not alone. 
He's waiting for you. Knocking at your door. 
Love will pull us together. 

I hope you can take a few moments to listen to this video of  "Hold us Together"
We miss our drummer.

1 comment:

  1. so glad you have this video to remember him by …and all the many photos you took are just precious.
    Keep persevering! We love you all!