You Choose Whether Overcoming is Better Than Being Overwhelmed

Running in a group is a lot of fun. There’s always somebody just a bit faster than you to give you just enough incentive to push it a little bit harder. Of course, there are also people that you can move faster than and this gives you the confidence as you stride up the side of the mountain and then catch a breath waiting for them at the top. For me though there is also this one little frustration that many runners don’t have to deal with.

As everybody is running along there are great conversations that begin. Important topics get discussed and world problems are solved. Unfortunately, I miss most of these amazing discussions. Not because I’m so much faster or that I don’t want to talk while I am running with you, but because running with hearing aids isn’t practical. For me to understand you I would have to run backward so I could read your lips. Unfortunately, I haven’t quite perfected the art of running on trails backward yet. Maybe if I could glue eyes on the back of my head.

Hard of Hearing in a Hearing World

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All the details of why I can’t hear are part of a much longer story but basically, my three little bones that are supposed to move and make the sound happen don’t do that anymore. That leaves me with the option of everybody around me having to shout (my wife has perfected this art) so that I can hear you or wearing hearing aids all the time.

Being hearing challenged presents me with a choice in life. I can either give in to not being able to hear or I can find ways to overcome not being able to hear

Giving in to the situations that are facing us will leave us stuck in the same place, sort of like being stuck in sticky, gooey mud. However, deciding to overcome challenges in our lives presents us with new opportunities to move on to the brilliant now and future that is being prepared for us.

Are You Overcoming or Being Overwhelmed?

The other day I was playing Bible Roulette (close your eyes, stick your finger in the Bible and then slide your finger in and as you open your eyes whatever you read that’s what God wanted) and my finger slid to John 16:33. The context of this verse is that Jesus’ disciples seemingly finally get it and they no longer need to confess that Jesus came from God. Good thing I’m not Jesus because I would have answered much differently beginning in verse 31. Make your way down to verse 33 though and Jesus says, “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”

I was trying to explain to a hearing person what not being able to fully hear is like. The best way I can describe it is to put on head-phones that are noise canceling and then spend a day trying to understand what people are saying. You still hear sounds and there are words that jump out but you miss most of the words being spoken.

This isn’t the end of the world, it’s just a trial, a temporary sorrow and when I make daily decisions on how to overcome the trial that is where I am flooded with peace. Jesus promised me peace in the midst of sorrows. He never promised me that I wouldn’t have trials and sorrows, but he did promise that I would have peace in Him because He has overcome the world. This is where I make lemonade out of lemons instead of just sucking on the bitterness.

I want to hear all the conversations going on in my office and be part of the laughter I hear coming from outside my office. I want to hear the conversations going on when we run together and join in the discussions around me. However, not hearing also means I can concentrate better on my work and I am able to solve problems and come up with solutions for my customers sometimes because I can’t hear all the distractions around me. I simply take my hearing aids out or just unplug the battery and the next thing I know I am flooded with peace because it is silent and I can concentrate. On the trails, I can’t always hear you when you call out to me. Sometimes that means I get a little extra mileage because you were trying to tell me to turn back on that other trail but I didn’t find out until I heard you screaming (sorry about your sore throat by the way) but extra mileage is always a good thing.

Peace In All Situations

For all of us, there are situations in life that have to be overcome. I watch a lot of people just give in to their circumstances though and they become paralyzed by something that if they would just believe there is a positive to the seeming negative there would be whole new vistas opened up to them. Find ways to seek the peace of God in all your situations, don’t just succumb to the situation and let it overwhelm you. Overcome is such a better word than overwhelm.

I am honored that Jesus would overcome the world just for me. What is more important in this whole faith thing is to believe that He has already overcome every situation facing me and that He will flood me with His peace as I overcome the trials and sorrows facing me. Get creative with your faith, find ways to make that negative a positive, help others see whatever trial you are facing as an opportunity instead of a thing to be pitied. Place yourself in situations where you need to overcome instead of finding ways to guard yourself against the trial you may face.

I will always enjoy running with you even if I can’t hear you. I will laugh with you at the end of the run, joke about my extra mileage and sure I might have missed solving the world’s problems with you on the trail but I gained something even better. I didn’t let my not being able to hear keep me from enjoying the beauty around me. I soaked up the quietness of the mountains around us and pushed myself to wait for you when there are forks in the trail or keep up with you if you’re running in front of me and I thoroughly enjoyed the feeling of having overcome once again.

Tomorrow I will get up and do it again. I’ll overcome the challenges that face me even though I don’t enjoy sticking contraptions in my ear so I can hear you. I’ll do it because I enjoy you and because I enjoy the promises of God and the peace that surrounds me as I overcome.

What about you? What do you need to overcome today? If you clap for this article I won’t be able to hear it because I took my hearing aids out but I will appreciate it. For more please continue to follow me on Medium as I run into the glorious future that has already been planned for me and hopefully encourage you to move into that future also.

Over the last seven years I have lost over 80 pounds and gone from a sedentary lifestyle to now running ultra marathons. Along the way I have discovered my love for writing, for encouraging others and for living a lifestyle of constantly pushing myself beyond what I think my limits are. Visit Mike at MikeHornerUltra.com.
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Over the last seven years I have lost over 80 pounds and gone from a sedentary lifestyle to now running ultra marathons. Along the way I have discovered my love for writing, for encouraging others and for living a lifestyle of constantly pushing myself beyond what I think my limits are. Visit Mike at MikeHornerUltra.com.

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