Thursday, August 2, 2012

"Little Pupa"

I was talking with a couple of good friends the other day. I was really struggling and sharing my heart with them. As we were talking, one of them referred to me as the "Little Pupa". Her and my other friend grinned and we chuckled about it. I'm afraid, no matter how hard I try, this nickname is going to stick with these two dear friends.

It made me think about something after they left. My very first tattoo was a butterfly on my wrist with the letters SPCH underneath (pictured to the right). The SPCH is from Romans 5:3-5, "Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us." (Suffering... Perseverance... Character... Hope). I chose the butterfly for my design because of a story I had read. This is the story...

A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared. He sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to squeeze its body through the tiny hole. Then it stopped, as if it couldn't go further.

So the man decided to help the butterfly. He took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bits of cocoon. The butterfly emerged easily but it had a swollen body and shriveled wings.

The man continued to watch, expecting that any minute the wings would enlarge and expand enough to support the body. Neither happened! In fact the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around. It was never able to fly.

What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand: The restricting cocoon and the struggle required by the butterfly to get through the opening was a way of forcing the fluid from the body into the wings so that it would be ready for flight once that was achieved.

Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our lives. Going through life with no obstacles would cripple us. We will not be as strong as we could have been and we would never fly.

-- Author Unknown

I got this tattoo after a time of some suffering in my life and I wanted a reminder of how God uses the struggles in our lives to make us stronger and give us the ability to fly. I was going to get it on my ankle but decided on my wrist so it would be more visible to me day to day. I may be back in the "pupa" stage again, but my butterfly on my wrist reminds me that I will once again fly.

With hope,

Sherri "Little Pupa"

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Failure? Or just a different direction?

I had three major goals this year regarding my running....

1. run/walk 1,000 miles
2. run/walk Dam to Dam 20K
3. run/walk the DM full marathon

This week I realized none of these goals are going to come to fruition and I have been feeling like a failure. I was just lying in bed thinking, praying, processing and I remembered something Gabe, our youth pastor, said in youth group one night, or maybe it was just in conversation. Anyway, I digress. The point is, he said something that made me realize that the goals that I have set out might not be goals GOD wants me to accomplish.

When I think about these goals I see they are full of pride. Not that I don't give God the glory and praise when He enables me to accomplish these things, but my main reason for doing them was because I wanted to do them. I wanted the glory. I wanted the praise. I wanted people to look at all I had done and say "ooh" and "aah".

Here it is, over 1/2 way through the year and none of these goals are going to get accomplished. My main reason for my physical goals is that I want to be healthy and be able to live life in a way that honors God. However, God has shown me some things... a lot of things... things that have been brought to the surface that were brushed under the rug for far too many years. Thanks to some wonderful friends I realized tonight not accomplishing these things does not make me a failure. I've still done a lot more than I would have had I sat on the couch every day. I still ran a 5K, I still have plans for another 5K and a 10K and 1/2 marathon. MORE IMPORTANTLY though, I am taking time to be the pupa. No, not the pupil... the pupa... I'm kind of curled up in a cocoon right now and God is peeling away layers. It is painful, it hurts, it's hard, truth be told... it sucks. As another great friend told me, the process is all in God's hands - in His timing. I don't know how long it will take. I don't know how much more pain I will have to endure. I don't know a lot, but I know God is in control. I know I have His Spirit in me and that HE will give me the strength to get through somehow. Goals can be good... but they need to be for the right reason. Someday I may run another marathon. For now I have one goal... I want to be a woman after God's own heart... for in the end, that is what truly matters.

Fighting the good fight,


Sunday, July 29, 2012

Swallowing my pride... GULP!

I think I knew in the back of my mind several weeks ago, but it was confirmed today and I finally have peace as I have realized there is no way I will be ready for the full marathon in just 12 weeks. I have resigned myself to the fact that with the emotional/spiritual/physical struggles I've had that no matter how stubborn.... err.... determined... I am, running/walking/jogging 26.2 miles is not in my best interests.

I need to work on getting myself emotionally/spiritually/physically healthy and training for a marathon would be much too much to expect of myself right now.

Pressing on, with a little less pride,


Good week... bad week... good week... bad week...

The pattern over the past five weeks since I "started" marathon training has been just that... good week, bad week, good week, bad week...  If the pattern continues I will have a bad week the week before the marathon... I think this pattern needs to STOP!

I have been seeking a "gym buddy" and may have found someone. Having some accountability to just get to the gym for my workouts would help. I also found someone through the TEAM 413 page on facebook ( who has offered some training tips and help. His name is Matthew Schneider and he is beginning his quest to qualify for the 2016 Olympics. He's running the DM marathon and I hope to be able to meet him when he is here.

This week I only managed one 3 mile run/walk and a few days of cross training. My body and spirit have been weak. I'm feeling a little more hopeful this week and am looking forward to a fresh start as I begin a new week of training tomorrow.

I've added a place on my blog where you can enter your e-mail address to subscribe to my blog. Some of you have already asked to be on an "email list" where you get an e-mail when I post on my blog, but if you haven't done so, and want to be added you just need to enter your e-mail in the box on the right.

Pressing on with hope,