Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Lessons from the marathon

5000 metres, originally uploaded by mincaye.

Due to afternoon showers yesterday, the sports heats were postponed to this morning. Among the events of this first set, was the 5000-metre race (though 'marathon' would seem a more appropriate word).

A simple question: what's the difference between the two pictures?

Nothing, except that 'Take One' was shot immediately after the first few runners completed the race. Shyan (in blue) finished somewhere about sixth.

On the other hand, 'Take Two' was shot several laps later, when the eighth (or possibly ninth) runner finally completed the twelve-and-a-half laps around the massive V.I. field.

He ran very slowly, but nonetheless completed the 'marathon.' Another runner, also from Lee Kuan Yew (the yellow house), led for several laps early on, before finally crashing out near the end.

The event reminded me of Pastor Stanley's words on Sunday: "In a marathon, the winner gets the medal, but the one who finishes last gets the standing ovation."

I suppose, in life, as in the marathon, it's all about finishing. For although our aim should always be to finish well, in some races, to finish at all is quite a feat. And in actually finishing, we finish well.

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." (Hebrews 12:1)

"Not that I have already... been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me." (Philippians 3:12)

Let us run, and not give up or give in. Amen.

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