recently when running around the newly made paths at lakeview methodist camp, texas, usa; my feet were reminded of running around kaabong town, kaabong district, uganda.
that is where the similarities end as far as scenery and surroundings.
kaabong is predominately sand, short scrub trees and stacks of large rocks dotting “the undulating hills of dadoth” like stacks of rocks one would make on the playground, only these would have had to been made by giants.
lakeview is “behind the pine curtain” in east texas–these hills full of tall texas pine–holding one’s view to within a few yards rather than the several miles one can see without straining one’s eyes in kaabong. if there are large stacks of boulders around lakeview, they must be on the backs of the turtles that create the earth and all of them covered with east texas sand.
these differences were noted by my eyes, my skin (the air was chilly here in texas yet managed to be humid, my skin remembers the dry, constant heat of kaabong), my lungs–but my feet…they became confused.
about 1.5 miles into a run, my feet and i encountered a rather large hill. this hill caused me to focus my eyes predominately on my feet so as to not trip, or misjudge the grade of the hill.
i have recently been meeting difficult portions of distance runs by counting my steps. i will count to one hundred and then promptly begin at one again. i had counted several hundred steps during and post hill-climbing when my eyes caught a glimpse of something in my path.
not a full vision of something, but a small incomplete picture of what lay ahead. this incomplete version of reality triggered something way in the back of my brain. i stopped running–froze on the path–heart pounding and attempting to hold my breath.
the word that the back of my brain screamed into my internal ears in those milliseconds was what stopped me. it took at least 10 times as long for that reasoning to come from the non-cognitive place inside my head to the cognizant part of my head where i was able to examine this word and consider it rationally.
there is a extraordinarily good change that there are zero land mines around the lake at lakeview. one could probably safely assume that there are little to no land mines around east texas. but for a few milliseconds that felt like a few millennia there was at least one land mine, and it was in my path, and it stopped my heart.
interestingly enough, this makes me wonder about encountering jesus in those around me.
i’ll let you draw your own conclusions from that.