I have such high hopes for my Sunday runs; specifically, at what hour I’ll actually begin. In my dreams, I start early and make it back home in plenty of time to at least stand a chance of arriving to church before my sister Susan does. Which for us, admittedly, isn’t when the announcements are read. It’s somewhere after the-Lord-be-with-you-and-also-with-you‘ing ends and the sermon begins.
What has been known to happen though, is that on some days I am poised to finish my run to accomplish that. Then I think, “Well, I’m making such good time, I bet I can get another half-mile (or mile) in.” So I end up being late, slipping into the chapel as the first words of the sermon are spoken.
Today, I started my run almost 15 minutes earlier than usual. I thought, “This is it! I’m going to make it!” So I happily ran, listening to my This American Life podcast and then NPR Sunday. About two miles from home, the rain started.
This is good, I thought. I’m not far from the house. I’ve run almost as far as I’d planned. The rain is not torrential. Water dripped steadily from the sky for a bit, and then the rain became more steady. I kept going (what else could i do?!), thankful I was close to the end of my run and that these were only showers: No thunder. No lightning.
Not until I was five blocks from home did a sudden bright flash fill the sky and split a cloud. A few houses later, a jolt of thunder jostled me out of my zone. I was almost home, almost home.
I shucked my shoes outside the door and went inside just as the sky dropped. I confess I didn’t go to church, which is a bit ironic considering one of the few times I could have been on time, the lousy weather probably would have made me late anyway.
So for starting my run earlier than usual, for storms that held off until I was safely at home, for timing that may be fate or luck or divine intervention, The Grateful Runner says thank you.