Life Really is a Marathon

Life Really Is A Marathon - Parenting Like Hannah

Photo by Leah Jones

A few years ago, I decided to walk the Avon 3-day for breast cancer. The 3-day part involves walking sixty miles over a three day period. If you are familiar with the Atlanta area, we started at Lake Lanier and ended up in Piedmont Park! The organization gives you a very useful training schedule. That ten month training period was the most intense exercise period of my life. Motivated primarily by fear, I walked from when my daughter left for school until she returned home almost every day.

I would love to say that every year, I get up almost every morning and do my strength training and an hour of cardio. The truth is that a lot of the time life gets in the way. I am gradually learning that it is okay to drop the ball once in awhile. The trick is to remember to pick it up again as soon as you can.

If you have started trying some of the activities in this blog with your child, give yourself permission to have some false starts. When we started family devotionals, it took us several attempts before we were able to be consistent for a long period of time. We started with a bedtime devotional. Our daughter’s school had a couple of late night events and we lost our way for awhile. Finally we realized that for us breakfast devotionals were ideal.

The reality of raising children means someone gets sick, work schedules change, homework sometimes gets piled on and activities fluctuate with the weather. What often happens is that our guilt at having stopped something important paralyzes us from starting over. We rationalize that too much time has gone by or that if it didn’t work the first time, it won’t work now.

When I realize I have stopped doing something I know is important for my child’s spiritual growth, I think of the words in Hebrews 12:1. I try to throw off whatever is hindering me and run the race marked out for me with perseverance. I encourage you to examine the things you believe are the most important for your child’s spiritual growth. Go ahead and start them again, even though it may mean tweaking the activity a bit to help you be more consistent. Who knows, I may even do my cardio tomorrow morning!

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Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. (Deuteronomy 11:18-19 NIV)