“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us” (Hebrews 12:1)

On Sunday morning, at 7:00 a.m. I was lined up on Secor Road with 9500 fellow runners and preparing to start the Glass City Half Marathon. My friend Mike, who was running his first half marathon, was with me at the start and we were talking strategy. Mike finally said, “Just keep the main thing the main thing!” “What’s the main thing” I asked. “To give thanks to God that we’re healthy enough to do this”. Mike and I are both in our early 50’s, and Mike recently lost his older brother to cancer. The loss of his brother devastated him, but he kept showing up to run with us and talk with us. And that showing up made a real difference for Mike.

There is something about community that is so important for us. As God speaks in the 2nd chapter of Genesis, “We are not meant to be alone.” We are meant to be together. To gather together. To study together. To pray together. To worship together. To race together. Life is too precious and beautiful to live it alone. It must be shared.

When we finished our race and crossed the finish line at the University of Toledo Glass Bowl my friend Mike thanked me for running with him. He added, “I wish my brother could have seen this.” I simply said, “He did”.