Saturday, September 25, 2021

Handling Failure

[Originally published in the Monroe News on September 24, 2021]

It has been a few weeks now since I spent an amazing weekend up in the U.P. in Marquette with my brother.  I was up in that gorgeous portion of our state to run a 50-mile ultramarathon.  I’m in love with these endurance adventures especially because they are the perfect excuse to visit and explore some of the most wonderful parts of God’s creation.  While I had a great time in Marquette my ultra race didn’t go as planned.  I did not finish the race. It is what runners call a “DNF”.  I failed.  A tough mixture of above average heat and problems in my legs made for a shortened day.

In the weeks since I’ve wrestled with what happened that day and have been thinking over and over again about this word failure.  Was my “DNF” a failure?  I had set out that day to run a full race and hit that finish line and I didn’t achieve that goal.  By that basic definition my race that day was a failure.  I had come up short on my goal.  As you well know this happens in many of life’s events, not just in running a race.  We could look at these many goals and objectives we set and conclude that if we don’t reach them it too is a failure.  But not everyone would agree.

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