Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Hitting the Wall
There's a phrase in endurance sports to describe the point when your body and mind are utterly fatigued and all you can think of is sitting down, resting, eating, whatever. They call it "hitting the wall". I first became aware of it in graduate school. I had paper upon paper upon paper due at the end of a quarter and nothing in me wanted to keep going to finish. In fact, I turned a couple of the papers in days late. This hitting the wall seems to happen when one is really far into their endeavor and at the point where you can actually see the end of the thing. It was with those grad school papers that I broke through the wall of anything for the first time in my life and it was an experience I am so happy to have had. Our life in Christ can sometimes feel like hitting a wall - the sin we can't stop committing, the relationship that doesn't seem to deliver after years of praying, the loved one who doesn't embrace the gift of Jesus after years and years of interceding on their behalf. We throw our hands up finally one day and God takes over! That's where I was on day 30 of the fast. I had "hit the wall". I woke up not wanting to fast anymore and asking God if I could quit. It took 3 days of this to realize what was happening. Once I realized it, things got easier and I started looking at the end to cheer me on. "Only 7 more days. You've come this far. Do you really want to quit when you are so close? You can do 6 more. You know God helps with every hunger pang - just ask." And on I went.