Then a man of Benjamin ran from the battle line the same day, and came to Shiloh with his clothes torn and dirt on his head.
1 Samuel 4:12
1 Corinthians 9:24-27
Earlier this year, 2,200 runners participated in the first Bible Marathon. It was held in Israel and followed the path of the runner in 1 Samuel 4:12, from Eben Ezer to ancient Shiloh—a distance of 26 miles.
Similar to running a marathon—marriage and running both require commitment, dedication, and a focus on finishing well. During a long-distance run, there are officials, family members, and friends along the course to provide water, to call out encouraging words, and to provide medical care if needed. In marriage, we also need to have those moments of refreshment, to hear kind and affirming words, and to bind one another’s hurts when distress or sorrow enters our lives.
Marathon runners often fear hitting “the wall,” the moment when their energy level drops so drastically that it becomes difficult to remain in the race. But through proper preparation and training, a runner can continue on through “the wall” and finish the run. At times in marriage, couples hit “a wall” that seems difficult to overcome; but with God as the coach and the Bible as the training manual, husbands and wives can make it through that challenging time and experience newfound joy in marriage.
Love is not a feeling, but a determined act of will…