December 20, 2012

In search of answers, re-kindling past flames, and praising a life well lived

 I ran home with tears of sadness in my eyes after work Friday just as I did over 5.5 years with teammates the day after the Virginia Tech shootings. My heart goes out to the families of the victims. There have been numerous terrible shootings since but this one at Sandy Hook Elementary was particularly difficult since most of the victims were beautiful little children. The shocking news has hit people all over the world including relaxed and uninterested Western Australians. Typically apathetic co-workers, supposedly tough guys who drink 10 beers a night, smoke a pack a day, and work outside in the dirt and dust running massive diesel machinery, have been venting their frustration and confusion to me (since I am American) all week “They were only children…” Even the President of the United States who routinely maintains his cool while addressing audiences of victims of torture, murder, war, disease, and 911 began to break down.

I don’t know the answers about gun control or why these things happen but it has re-kindled some old emotions and thoughts for me. I took some time to re-read about the life of Liviu Librescu. Here is a man that must have asked himself a million times why he survived the Holocaust and millions of others didn’t.  So he packed his life with rich experiences and never took it for granted. Then decades after surviving the Holocaust, he would be other the other end giving his life so that his classroom full of student could go on to lead excellent lives.  I'd like to see a report on what those students are doing now but I can only assume, like so many of my university friends, they have become engineers. PHDs, teachers, humanitarians, or a “bright light in a dark world” as Ravi Zacharias said. His story makes me smile in praise of a life well lived.

Here is a link to an MP3 of world renowned Christian Apologist Ravi Zacharias addressing Virginia Tech in October 2007, the fall after the shootings. (right click, save as).  I listen to it once or twice a year to remind myself to keep living a big life and don’t take it for granted. And if you don’t know who Ravi Zacharias is, then read about his life. He tells about a dozen stories in the mp3 that are all incredible. He tells about a time when he was ministering to troops in Vietnam at the age of 25. They were driving down a dirt road in enemy territory when their jeep broke down. They tried waving down another jeep for help but it just sped by. After 10 minutes of working on their jeep it started. A half mile down the road, the jeep that passed them was blown up and on fire on the side of the road. The point he made about this story was that we don’t know when our time will come.

Here is a link to a transcript of a sermon by Phillip Yancey, author of where is “God When it Hurts”, he presented a week after the shooting. Ironically, he was wearing a neck brace during the sermon having just been in a car accident where he himself was almost killed.

Events like this one make re-evaluate if I am living a life well lived or not? Am I being grateful for the opportunities I have been given or am I squandering it? I don’t know but I am going to recommit to living a big, rich life.

PICTURE: The picture at the top of the post was taken a few weeks after Virginia Tech in May 2007.  It was my first time covering more 20 miles.  It was a 35.5 mile loop of Virginia's Triple Crown.    I had planned on doing it as a two day trip so I had a tent and sleeping bag and all the necessary gear.  But as the sun was setting as seen in the picture, I decided to push on 11 more miles to finish the loop under cover of darkness.  At the time, it was the single hardest thing I had ever done...That was until I ran 50 miles at Old Pueblo (See my race report). 


Wish this race in Telluride took place in 2010 when I was running like a maniac. Telluride is awesome.  I had an awesome time running the Imogene Pass Run and Road tripping throught there on my "Goodbye America Tour" Southwest Colorado would be among the top 5 places I would want to live in the USA.

I had a big post put together about all the races I was going to run for 2013. Unfortunately, I am still having problems. Low back/Hip/Shin is still bothering me. I have been running 30-60 minutes a day but I am probably doing more damage. Every day one of those three things(back/hip/shin/thigh) hurt. Just can’t build off it and get to the running shape I want to be in so might have to throw in the towel and cross train. I did these for a full 4 months earlier in the year and still had the same symptoms so I don’t know if that will do anything for me either…

This guy had a sick year running in the Sierras.  Simply Stunning. 

Might have to purchase this movie of Kilian for some inspiration...

No comments:

Post a Comment