This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil, where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever…
Hope. Our souls are anchored to the assurance of hope. I hope it doesn’t rain on race day. I hope I can finish this run. I hope my legs don’t quit working with five miles to go. I hope we reach the $10,000 goal. I hope to see Mazzy run a race. I hope others see Christ through me. I hope for the glory of the Kingdom of Almighty God, in Heaven and on Earth. And so a group of fourteen friends, known affectionately as the Columbus Racers, partnered with Brown Horse Garments to run in Columbus, Ohio, on 21 October 2012, to raise $10,000 for Mazzy and her family. While we wanted to meet physical and material needs, our true goal was to provide the assurance of hope to anchor the soul. Each year, the Columbus Marathon organizers choose a theme for the race. 2012’s theme was INSPIRE. One way Brown Horse Garments tried to inspire others was through our presence at the post-race Celebration Village. This was the first time we participated in such a massive event, and we want to thank our volunteers Matt, Sarah, and Dan, who provided hope by sharing the mission of BHG and the message of Mazzy. We were all inspired. To run. To edify. To love. To hope. So here are some inspired words from the Columbus Racers:
The fireworks start, finally the race is starting…I think, “Why am I putting myself through this again?”…Slowly our corral moves up,…and we are off…I get several comments on our WE HAVE shirts. One runner lives in Mazzy’s neighborhood. Sometime after mile 12 I hear Mazzy’s family cheering…14 people came together to raise thousands of dollars to help this family–just amazing. Crossing the finish line always feels great…, not only the 13.1 miles but also helping others in your community. (S)
I was thankful and honored to be a part of running with people I like for a cause greater than ourselves. And on race day it was glorious to see Mazzy and her family cheering us on. It made all the times I ran with no physical desire to push myself worth it to share it with friends and Mazzy. (G)
For me it was such a privilege and thrill to be a part of something in which I could literally see God weaving together many different parts to make a whole new and beautiful thing…Seeing how He led each of the runners to push through pain and doubt to get to race day…seeing Him stir the hearts of His people to give to Mazzy and pray for her…it was such a WE HAVE experience, without each of the parts the whole would not have been complete! I know He works like this all the time but for me it was AMAZING and AWESOME to see Him do it one tiny step at a time! Praise the Lord!!! (M)
Which words would you choose to express what it feels like to witness God speak to so many people about showering the same family with His Enormous Love? I felt so much joy being in the will of God. This is true living…[t]o live outside ourselves for just a moment felt like Heaven on Earth! (B)
My favorite moments were the runners tapping me on the arm…to compliment the shirts…[O]ne kid with hair down to his knees punched me on the arm and simply said, “Jesus Christ. Awesome, bro,” and then ran past me. (B)
As soon as I finished I knew I wanted to run again. Not just the race on foot, but the race put before all of us…We don’t know who needed to read that shirt or at what mile, but I know someone did, and it changed the course of their run. That is what matters to me, and I found out that weekend it is important to all of you, too…What better time to reflect than when you can’t speak and you’ve got 2+ hours to get straight thoughts that give God ALL the glory!! (A)
During the twenty-first mile I commiserated with a runner wearing a sign on his back: “Grace Team Hope” (www.graceteamhope.org). There it is again: Hope. He was raising money for and awareness of the exploitation of children, primarily in Southeast Asia. I told him about Mazzy and the Brown Horse tent at the Celebration Village. We offered one another Hope that we would reach the finish line.
To run distance is a decision that is filled with sacrifice. To live life with the mindset of sacrifice is beautiful because it is filled with our God’s character…The bigger reality of the whole moment was how God used this instance to remind me of His joy in bearing my sin upon the cross and delivering me. Just as Mazzy’s situation pushed me to handle the pain of the moment, so, too, our Savior remembered our helpless states and was able to bear the cross–for we are “the joy that was set before Him” (Hebrews 12)…My prayer is that my life is a race of sacrifice for others and for the glory of God. (D)
More of a God wink…As each one passed us, all pushing their bodies to the maximum to allow this to happen…just as Jesus did on the cross as He was taking His stripes for [our] healing…and we watched them run into the distance we were reminded not of our sorrows but all that “WE HAVE.” (Mazzy’s mom, B)
I don’t know Mazzy’s dad, M, very well. In fact, it wasn’t until dinner the night before the race that we even met. Yet after months of training and more than four hours of torment and joy along the course, the first person I saw was M. We hugged and thanked one another, offering each other Hope. (R)
Most importantly, this isn’t over. Mazzy still needs your help. She will continue to need special treatment, rehabilitation, and, vitally, prayer. Visit We Have Mazzy’s Back to learn how you can donate. And take a look around you. There are people everywhere who need to be INSPIRED, who need HOPE. Tell them about the hope that is the steadfast anchor of the soul.