Tuesday, February 14, 2012

My friend and I went running





Yesterday, with lung searing cold weather oustide,I laced up my New Balance and took off down the road.I hadn't gone very far when I felt a friend  by my side.Her beautiful face filled my thoughts and I dedicated my run to her.

She and her husband  are younger than my husband and I and he knows them better ,having gone on mission trips with them to Africa and Central America ,but they are dear to both of us.When Mike and my husband returned from Ghana,a few years back, Danise was embarking on a journey that no one could have envisioned.She had been having back pain and went to check it out .After a battery of tests, the results were overwhelming.As she sat with Mike and absorbed this blow, she thought: "I can deal with this if I can run."In a soft voice she asked the doctor about this and since her condition involved the spine, he said no..Her last run had been her very last.I can't imagine what all this felt like to her.

We had dinner a few months ago , her spirit is undimmed and her husband is devoting every second to her health.They were remarkable in their determination to live and fight and they have.It was an honor to be with them.Last week, they were at Duke getting treatment for liver involvement and her first act was to have her beautiful ,long dark hair trimmed and donated to others who have none.As a caring nurse, this is so Danise,serving others.The pictures on Facebook show her smiling,with her locks in her hand.

I like to think that runners are special people.To choose this lonely ,hard endeavour sets us aside in my view.
On every run, my body begs for me to stop and to say 'no" requires some inner strength.My sons have had ice cubes thrown in their face,small batteries heaved at them and I have been flipped off more times then I can tell by the great unwashed.My favorite happening is the car that comes up beside you after you have moved over and blasts the horn that causes the heart to leap out of the chest.A close second is the driver that refuses to give an inch and dares you to stay where you are.And yes, we keep going ,undaunted and in the knowledge that we are doing something hard and very satisfying.

As I observe Danise's grace and incredible spirit in this time of trial, I like to think that it is her faith,the love of Mike and her running heart that are seeing her through.Who knows what graces are coming to her and others in this testing time?As I jogged, these wonderful words,this magnificent promise ,came to mind:

"Do you not know or have you not heard?The Lord is the eternal God,creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint nor grow weary,and his knowledge is beyond scrutiny.
He gives strength to the fainting:for the weak he makes vigor abound.
Though young men faint and grow weary,and youths stagger and fall,They that hope in the Lord will renew their strength,
they will soar with eagle's wings ;
They will run and not grow weary,walk and not grow faint."Isaiah 40:28-31  

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this uplifting piece of sharing. As we add Danise to our prayer list, we salute her and her husband for their deep faith, devotion and courageous trust. Leaning completely on the Lord is a very difficult thing; we proud humans like to 'control' our own lives. Her determination is an excellent example to those around her (and far away too!), Hat's off to Danise! Tell her to read Jeremiah 33:3.

sharon graham said...

Anon, thanks for seeing the good in this hard time and praying for Danise.Wonderful!
And we never know who will be touched from far away by our faith and courage...love-sha