"Just breathe. You're almost done."
My feet pound the pavement on a hot sunny day. The melting tar on the road crackles under my shoes. One minute left, and then I can walk again, cool off, stretch.
I grit my teeth, squeeze my eyes shut and mutter "Run with me, God! I need you to run with me."
Instantly, an image flashes through my mind. My Savior is by my side, laughing.
"No, my child, You run with me."
Instead of the long hot road ahead of me , we're running through a beautiful place where I can hear a nearby waterfall. I hold His hand tightly and am careful to put my feet where He steps. We're leaping over rocks and splashing through the cool river. Every time I stumble His strong arms hold me up.
We climb trees and mountains and wander through dark underground caverns. All the while His light guides me. Around every corner there are new and exciting experiences, each one better than the one before. Danger is ever present, and I'm afraid. His steady voice leads me ever forward.
We're on our way to His home, and He maneuvers every step perfectly. Nothing surprises Him. He knows each twist and turn like the back of His hand. Most importantly, He knows me.
I open my eyes and see the long road ahead of me. The hot sun beats on my back as heat radiates off the asphalt. Each step sends an all too familiar pain up and down the back of my legs.
"Beep-beep-beep." It's been one minute.
I slow to a walk and decide, I want to run with Jesus.