I am a runner.
Not the kind that puts on a number, pushes through anguish and pain, soars across highways and bridges and fields and finish lines. I'm the kind of runner that flees from harm and pain and danger.
Animals are born-created-with an innate sense of danger. They recognize it almost instantly and their nervous system tells them to fight or to flee. And mine? Mine tells me to flee.
I'm not sure where I learned this routine, or if I was created similar to an animal, or if my maturity level is lower than what I thought. And I also didn't even know I was doing this. But I do know that doubt can be so dark, that you can't even see your feet below you. Even worse, doubt starts as a tiny seed that grows into guilt, and the guilt grows into shame, and the shame matures to fear. And all of these emotions combined create a darkness so intimidating that you feel like the only way out is to surrender. And I had found myself in a pit of doubt so deep, that I couldn't see the light above me.
But then there is someone who won't allow this. A person close to you who cannot stand the idea of you losing the battle, falling into the darkness, surrendering against your better judgement. And the best kind of person is the person who will tell you you're better than all of this.
How could I ever doubt God's goodness? How could I look at my situation and wonder if he cared? Because He is the one who placed me where I am, where I was, and gave me this person long before I knew I needed her. She walked through similar struggles, before I was in my own, and grabbed my hand to pull me out.
About a month before getting married, I felt like I was looking down the drop of a roller coaster, down a cliff above a valley. And whether or not that was my preparation for things to come, I have to understand that recognizing danger is not my signal to flee.
Maybe, instead, I'll learn to fight. Maybe I'll learn to stand up for truth and to battle against lies and doubt and fear.
I will always be a runner. It's part of my make-up, part of my spirit. And maybe, just maybe, one day I'll be a runner of finish lines. Or maybe I'll just be the kind of runner I already am, running harder and faster to God.