I am excited to participate in a blog link up with blogger Heather Gerwing. The last Monday of each month, Heather invites other bloggers to share their “Four Somethings”. These should include Something Loved, Something Said, Something Learned, Something Read. These are four great topics to think about! If you are a blogger, you may post your Four Somethings too!
This is a picture of my hubby Bill and me at the XTERRA Big Elk Trail Half Marathon. I absolutely love running races with the person I love most in the world. At this race, I rolled my ankle less than a mile into the race. I moved to the side of the trail and leaned on Bill. He asked me if I thought we should walk back to the start. (I wonder if he would have carried me bride-style if I needed him to.) Luckily, after being passed by the entire pack of racers, I was able to gingerly put some weight on my foot and finish the race, but having him there made a scary situation so much better! He is a great guy and a wonderful running partner.
OK, I think Amby might be exaggerating just a little bit. I don’t know that everything else will be easy. Childbirth, for example, is not easy, no matter whether you are a runner or not. Although as a man, Amby never gave birth to a child, so he wouldn’t know. Maybe a more accurate quote would be “everything else will be easier.” That doesn’t flow quite as well as the original. Anyway, point well taken, Amby.
I learned how to accept criticism – with grace.
I think it is important to use criticism as an opportunity for self-reflection. To quote Proverbs “Whoever heeds life-giving correction will be at home among the wise. Those who disregard discipline despise themselves, but the one who heeds correction gains understanding.“
Grace is described as “unmerited divine assistance” or “the free and unmerited favor of God“. Unmerited. There is nothing we have done to deserve grace. It is a gift, freely given, from God to you on your birthday. This is, by design, so we don’t get too full of ourselves. Ephesians 2: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.”
June was actually a month where my reading was pretty light, both in terms of quantity and content. I read Into the Beautiful North by Luis Alberto Urrea. This is a novel about nineteen-year-old Nayali, who lives in Tres Camarones, Mexico, a small village almost completely devoid of men. The men of the village have gone north to the U.S. to find work. Accompanied by some friends and backed by her aunt Irma, mayor of Tres Camarones and Sinaloan state bowling champion, Nayali goes on a quest to find her father and six other men. She wants these men to return to defend their village, Magnificent Seven-style, from a band of drug dealing thugs.
The book was entertaining, poignant and an excellent commentary on the state of affairs at the U.S.-Mexican border from the point of view of a Mexican who crosses the border illegally in order to persuade other illegal immigrants to return home. I highly recommend it!
Thanks to Heather Gerwing for the opportunity and inspiration to reflect on four significant subjects!