born to run?

The highway’s jammed with broken heroes on a last chance power drive
Everybody’s out on the run tonight
But there’s no place left to hide…
Come on with me, tramps like us
Baby we were born to run…

Bruce Springsteen, lyrics Born to Run


(image of a high speed chase that ends in Houston)

We seem to be a people born to run.
Not physically mind you…as in the quickening of walking then breaking out into a full sprint…

Not running as in a physical form of fitness or sport… but rather the notion of
running AWAY from…as in avoiding.

Yeasterday, my husband and I got on Interstate 85, about 30 miles south of downtown Atlanta….
we were heading south a short ways, due to his wanting to go scope out some
recreational property..aka deer land.

We were driving in the right lane, only having to be on the interstate for a couple of exits when
my husband, looking in his rear-view mirror, nervously announces that
“I think a high speed chase it coming up behind us….”

Huh???

Sure enough, I turned around only to see a sea of blue lights as a small older, beat-up silver
Camary type of car comes flying past us on our left, in a blur… clocking in well over 100 MPH
as both GA State Patrol and local sheriff vehicles followed in a hot pursuit.

The interstate was crowded, but luckily the crowdedness was somewhat spaced out enough
for Mr.”Camary” to weave in and out while his pursuers were equally weaving.

Our exit was next and luckily we got off the interstate in one piece.
But I fretted…what of those further down the road…
did everyone avoid this selfish person who was putting all at grave risk
while running from the law for whatever reason???

This little incident got me thinking…
thinking about us…
us as in humankind…

and that of our running…
running away and running from…
as in…running to avoid, running to hide…

I was reminded of this from Genesis…

But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”
He answered, “I heard you in the garden,
and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”
And he said, “Who told you that you were naked?
Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”
The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”
Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”
The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”

Genesis 3:9-13

We run and we hide…We run while hiding from others while we run from the law,
we run from ourselves and more importantly, we run from the ultimate…we run from God…

We run from everyone around us while selfishly putting everyone else at risk
with our running…

Yet what are we running from?
Why are we running?
Do we not realize that no matter time nor space, we will eventually be found,
caught, discovered?

Why do we feel compelled to run…running from not only everyone,
but most importantly from our God while hiding from His presence?

Is it shame?
Defiance?
Arrogance?

Because is not this ultimate running, running from not just
those who are immediately around us, but rather running from our Creator…
while desperately trying to hide from Him…is that not our true impetus for running?

This thought as we enter Lent.

Running to or running from..that will be the question over the next 40 days…

“The cross is not the suffering tied to natural existence,
but the suffering tied to being Christians.
The cross is never simply a matter of suffering,
but a matter of suffering and rejection for the sake of Jesus Christ,
not for the sake of some other arbitrary behavior or confession.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Yet even now,” declares the Lord,
“return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning;
and rend your hearts and not your garments.”
Return to the Lord your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger,
and abounding in steadfast love; and he relents over disaster.

Joel 2:12-13

36 comments on “born to run?

  1. Marie Wright says:

    I feel I have missed something concerning our thoughts about praying together about the state of our country, etc. we were to come up with a plan…how, when. This is not a reply to today’s thoughts. Please advise what the final decision was. I have been praying but thought it was to be a specific time in a specific manner.

    • Hi Marie— it was in a post last week that I put up in which I spoke of how everything kept pointing me back to the need to pray for the children of abortion— a prayer for those who had no voice —-as well as for the mothers with such an intent in their hearts- the medical staffs performing such as well as legislators who desire to push such along with a nation now “bent” on such — I told anyone reading that this would be my prayer and all could join or not— there were not many comments so I’m praying over that daily as I suppose others have felt compelled to pray in different directions — no matter as our God hears the cries of all the innocent

      • Marie says:

        Thank you for answering. I have written down each one so I do not forget as each one is so important. I have it in my daily devotional so it is part of my quiet time from now on. I’ve been praying but didn’t feel I was praying with a group. I’m sure others are also even if you have not heard from them.

      • hopefully we’ll all be on the same page 🙂

    • Mother Hen says:

      Hi Marie! I am interested in agreeing with you and others in prayer. I lack discipline so having a specific day and time would work for me. I had dental work done and it totally took my focus off a lot of things until my certain issue healed..

      • Y’all let me know what you’d like to pray over— for me right now the burden of prayer is abortion but like Oneta said— pray for the burden God puts in your heart and when another comes along, pray for that new burden…

      • Mother Hen says:

        I would say abortion and our government, the hearts of people and the words they speak..

      • Marie Wright says:

        I understand. Life often interferes with the most important things we desire. I am so glad to get Julie’s reply to me. I do try to have a quiet time with the Lord every day but as I said, life happens. I’m sorry I can’t come up with a specific time except that hopefully daily is my goal. Hope your dental problems are healing well. Thank you for responding.

      • Tomorrow’s post will touch on our prayer — perhaps a fluid sort of prayer

      • Mother Hen says:

        Hi Marie! I too start my morning off with quiet time. It depends if my hubby is up early or not. It’s very special when I can sit and be still. I think having prayer partners here at wordpress is good. There are a lot of needs represented here too.. Thank you for commenting!

  2. SharaC says:

    Love this analogy… things have been very exciting down there of late for you guys!

  3. atimetoshare.me says:

    Running and yelling. Is there a pattern there?

  4. Tricia says:

    “Running to or running from…?” Love this Julie, it really is that simple.

  5. A very intriguing perspective to begin the holy discipline of Lent! Thank you! And it got me thinking…

    This line of yours — “Do we not realize that no matter time nor space, we will eventually be found,
    caught, discovered?” — reminds me of that famous poem by Francis Thompson, The Hound of Heaven:

    https://www.ewtn.com/library/HUMANITY/HNDHVN.HTM

    It’s a really long poem with old-fashioned language, but the point is that, like you said, it’s futile to run from infinite and eternal God. God will always pursue us, because God loves us intimately and infinitely. I think that most people are afraid that if they devote their lives to God, then their lives will be boring because all that they will have is piety (which they misunderstand and misconceive.) In the poem Thompson says:
    “For, though I knew His love Who followed,
    Yet was I sore adread
    Lest, having Him, I must have naught beside.”

    Maybe the reason that we run, run away, run away, is because we don’t want to lose. We are afraid of losing the good things that we think we have — freedom, for the lawbreaker; children’s love, for the too busy mother; sensual pleasures, for the hedonist. However, we are blind and deaf to the reality of truly good things — that they are of God, from God, and in God. In the poem, when the earthly things that had made the poet Thomson feel happy and fulfilled no longer give him comfort or joy, the poem says, in the voice of God,
    “All which I took from thee I did but take,
    Not for thy harms,
    But just that thou might’st seek it in My arms.
    All which thy child’s mistake
    Fancies as lost, I have stored for thee at home:
    Rise, clasp My hand, and come!’

    The loving embrace of God is definitely something worth running toward! Thank you for this reflection today. Your words are engaging, thought-provoking, and inspiring. I pray that I will be able to “run with” your insight and encouragement this Lent. God willing!
    Pax Christi

  6. Citizen Tom says:

    Had a similar experience when I was learning to drive. I was on winding a two-lane road that went through the woods in Mississippi. I heard the sirens quickly coming from behind me, and I went looking for a the shoulder of a road on a road that did not have a shoulder.

    My father was my co-pilot. I don’t know whether my driving or all the racket coming up from behind us scared him worse, but he did not have much time to do anything. The bank robber blurred pass us, and the police followed right on his tail.

    After recovering our composure, we continued on our way. What else was there to do? Well, now I hope I would take a moment thank God. We were okay. I also hope I would pray for those further down the road, but I have been born again, and I wasn’t then.

  7. Wally Fry says:

    Well, that was an adventure!

  8. SLIMJIM says:

    This makes me think of my own home town of LA. Its literally every night there’s a police pursuit. Last year there was two police pursuit that ended dramatically on our streets and even one was live on TV

  9. hatrack4 says:

    Oh so many directions that I could go with a comment… I usually lean toward the amusing story, but you make a great point. Then again, my story can be both. In high school, a friend came to class one Monday morning with a swollen side of his face and badly bruised. We asked him what happened. He said that when you are running away from someone, be sure to look where you are going. When he turned to see if his pursuer was gaining on him, he ran into a tree at full speed. For the life of me, I can’t remember if they were playing a game or if he’d done something rotten to the other person.

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