The Great Stretch

Zechariah Newman —  June 3, 2014 — 5 Comments

I have been in the later training stage for my next marathon, which is 26.2 miles for those that don’t know. This is my second marathon and in the later stages of training I have a lot to think about since my long runs last three hours. I was pushing out my mileage this last week and I thought how important this concept is to any dream chasing journey. We must constantly push through to new stages and new levels of being uncomfortable.


Photo by: KC Newman Photography

When I first started to exercise I couldn’t run a mile without stopping. In fact, I felt like I was going to die! Little by little I pushed beyond what felt fun and comfortable. If you would have told me that I would run marathons, I would have laughed at you. Now seven to ten miles are short runs. As I write this, I think about how amazing the journey in life is.

Think about it. What today do you do that use to seem impossible? I have three awesome kids that are five and under. I still remember when we had one and it seemed so hard. Now if anyone watches two of our kids, it feels like a vacation! (My wife and I are done with the stretch of more kids). We need to be comfortable with the uncomfortable. I know that sounds silly, but it is the truth. There is great comfort in the embrace and overall peace of discomfort.

Pain unfortunately is part of the process. While long distance running, one pain will subside as you run through it and another will begin. The pain of change is real, but so is the pain of regret. Most often in my life the pain of change is more physical, however, the pain of regret affects all areas of my life. If we are going to go through pain no matter what, I will choose the pain of change. How about you? Which pain will you choose to embrace?

Keep stretching, press through to new levels and embrace the pain of change. If you and I allow our lives to be molded, we will never be the same. So as Paul said in Philippians 4:13, “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” How about you? Will you press on? Will you allow God to stretch you? Don’t shrink back to comfortable, rather look forward in hope and anticipation. Be blessed on your journey.

What helps you to stretch?

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  • Pain and failure is part of growing. Allowing God to stretch us is a blessing. He is always for our good, even if it hurts sometimes.

  • The name of my blog is Jon Stolpe Stretched. This is where I share about life’s stretch marks. What helps me stretch? Life. There are stretching experiences happening all around us every day.

    • Very true Jon. Life stretches us. Keep rocking it, I hope your book sales have been solid.

      • Thanks. The book sales have been okay so far. I’m not sure I had any expectations for this first one. Obviously, I’d love it to be successful in terms of sales. More importantly though, I hope it will be successful in helping people draw closer to God.