"After a long day of school
Thoughts repeating in my mind,
It is track where I find Joy
During these moments in time."
These are just a few words that sum up my experience as a track athlete. The people on my team bring me joy when I am down and life when I struggle to make it through my day. I have grown, learned, overcome, and ultimately been shaped while being on this team. I have especially noticed the spiritual changes in my mind as I have been gradually able to overcome just by being a track athlete. This weekend was a perfect example of how God moved in me.
It all started this past Saturday. I woke up around 7:15 to go eat and then head in the vans to Minnesota State University in Mankato. I slept the whole way for 2, almost 3, hours as I listened to my worship music. I mentally began to get ready for my race, as I was about to run the 60-meter dash.
As I warmed up for this race, I was pumped, and I went from listening to soft worship to Christian rap music. I started bouncing my head back and forth, laughing and grooving to the beat. It wasn't until I started warming up that the nerves kicked in.
Ever since I was in middle school I have struggled with nerves, especially during track season. I would get sick almost all the time because negative thoughts roamed in my mind. As I've gotten older and have been at Northwestern, I've noticed a change within myself. Though I still get nervous, God has been teaching me that the thoughts in my head are not mine but from the enemy. He comes to kill, steal, and destroy.
Which brings me back to this weekend. Before my race, instead of dwelling on the thoughts in my mind, the people around me, and the obstacle in front of me, I thought about Jesus and how he casts out all fear. A song called, "I am Brave," sung by my church back home, popped up in my spirit. This song powerfully proclaims, "I am brave. Fear's power's lost its grip on me. No more shame, your perfect love has set me free. You are love and you are here. Your perfect love casts out fear. In your promise I will stay, shout your glory, shout your praise." After singing these words, I had an overwhelming feeling of indescribable peace. I immediately got in my starting blocks and thought about what my previous coach KB once told me, "Run fast." That's exactly what I did. Instead of thinking about my fears, I thought about Jesus, I prayed, then I just ran. That day I received 5th place overall. I am so thankful how God has been shaping my mind throughout these years and has been able to do it within the sport I love! To God be the glory!