Skip to main content

Transportation that transforms

Without a car might be a hindrance in many ways, but it is also a blessing in disguise in many ways. Over the years I discover how much riding a bike, or running for that matter, has in common with our Christian walk. In difficult times, in times which I want to stop, it teaches me perseverance and what faithfulness looks like. Exhaustion doesn’t just happen during physical activities. Prophet Elijah asked God to take his life after a day’s journey in the wilderness. At the brink of giving up, I learn that faithfulness is a long obedience in one direction, as Eugene Peterson says in his book. It’s keep-going when every part of you scream stop. People like to say, “If marathon is easy, everyone will be doing it.” Likewise, there’s no turning back in being a Christian and it’s not easy.

I have also learned the importance of one step at a time. When I’m getting tired on hills, I tend to put my head down and pedal. Looking at that formidable hill doesn’t give me energy but instills fear. The best strategy (for me) is to focus only on my next step. As long as I could pedal one more step or put one foot in front of the other, I could keep going. It’s not unlike our journey with God when He only reveals the next step ahead - for good reason. Perhaps if I see where He is bringing me to, I would have retreated and have given up all together. For our sake, He only reveals one step ahead in order that I could focus on what I could manage. Keeping in step with the Spirit is having a big picture in mind while focusing on the things at hand.

During really, really desperate times, my last resort is to pray the breath prayer. Breath prayer is an ancient practice to do exactly what Paul teaches: “Pray without ceasing.” Have you ever wonder how realistic that command is? We know that there is a time to be on our knees, but there is also a time to be on our feet and do something. Thankfully, an ancient monk found that the only way to achieve praying-without-ceasing is to incorporate prayers into what we naturally do all day long - breathing! Breath prayers are short, spanning only the duration of breathing-in and breathing-out. When I feel like there’s not an ounce of energy left in me, all I could do is simply cry, “Jesus, have mercy.” Repeatedly. Common expressions people say after a difficult/challenging run/ride like, “That nearly killed me,” or “I thought I was going to die” might not carry a whole lot of truth; nonetheless, I know Jesus preserves and sustains our lives at all times.

Without a doubt, a vehicle provides comfort and convenience. At some point in time, it becomes a necessity in our society. Or is it? If having money in our pocket and a vehicle at home puts us in the top 5% (or higher) on the Global Rich List, then it is safe to assume 95% of world’s population doesn’t have a vehicle. I always admire my missionary friends who literally give up everything for the Lord. Time and time I receive emails from them about waiting on the Lord to provide - be it a vehicle so they could reach remotes villages, or simply funds to sustain their lives in foreign land. And time and time their praise report on how God has met their needs. They put me in perspective and cause me to question my dedication to live for God. Is my pay check mine? Or the Lord’s? Should I live any differently than my missionary friends? Or the rest of the world?

The Lord provides. Paul boasts in his weakness, “so that the power of Christ may rest upon” him. By the same token, we experience God’s providence even more so in our lacking. God our Father knows what we need (Matthew 6:8).

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” -2 Corinthians 11:9-10


Popular posts from this blog


Three days after my first 50 miler, the OSS/CIA 50M held at Prince William Forest Park, my legs are feeling great while my body is still catching up in recovery. The funny thing is, even though I ran almost twice the distance of a marathon, I felt much better than how I was after my last two road marathons. The slower pace and the softness of trails is much more forgiving than the hard pounding on asphalt/concrete. I was even able to run a couple easy miles to test my legs yesterday.
The OSS/CIA 50M Night Run by Athletic Equation was held at Prince William Forest Park in Dumries, VA, about 1.5 hour north of Richmond. Two things lured me into signing up for my first miler: One is obviously to get at least one 50-miler in before my attempt at the WV Trilogy this fall. Two is the location of the run. The Park is the birth place of OSS, the predecessor to CIA in the 1930s. On the brink of war, U.S. intelligence operations needed a centralized effort. In response to the need, a team of un…

24 Things about Hinson Lake 24-Hr Ultra

Here are things that went through my mind during the 24-hour run, somewhat chronologically:
"I get a decal, a glass, and a shirt!?" "Where's Peter?" Peter came the night before and set up camps. Sometimes I think he's gifted with 48 hours a day."Wow. People actually do plan to run the whole duration.""Mt. Hinson?" There's a section of the course with a slight incline. I'm sure it's a fitting name at some point approaching 100 miles. I didn't give myself a chance to find out."Haha" - upon hearing someone telling Sharon and I that we are on pace for women's 24-Hour American Record at mile 3."Maybe I should switch to my hybrid shoes." And I did. After the first 13 miles, I switched from my Altra road shoes to the Inov-8 TerraFly for a little more tread."25.84 miles? Eh, so close." 17 laps on the 1.52-mile loop - not quite a marathon."30.4 miles? Eh, another lap to make it a 50k."&q…

WV Trilogy - Part 1

My experience at WV Trilogy is unimaginable. It wasn't just the run or the scenery, though both are spectacular - but more so my journey before and during the run, the emotions, the learning, and the tremendous love and support I get from friends and family. The last three days are not only a running adventure, but an opportunity of personal growth and defining moments which will outlast adrenaline or results.

Each of the journal entry is written after the run on each day. I want to share it chronologically and hopefully could take you through my experience as I have experience it.

(Thurs) Oct 11 at 8:19 pm - 
In my dorm room, in bed. I'm still nervous about my shin splints and calf pain. Both legs were hurting this afternoon. There's nothing much I could at this point but just take everything as it is - pain, race, outcome... My job tomorrow is to simply show up and do what I can. I'm praying to open my heart and mind to whatever God has for me and remember that I'…