Today is my birthday and while it has been a great day with many well wishes, smiles and laughter, I cannot help but reflect on yesterday’s tragedy at the Boston Marathon. As everyone is well aware, two bombs went off near the finish line, taking the lives of three spectators, including an 8-year-old boy, and wounding countless others. I’ve been reading blog posts and news articles and just can’t help but wonder what the perpetrator expected to come from such an act of malice.
My hearts go out to the victims and to all who experienced that dreadful moment in time. From joy to sudden chaos, fear and heartache. As any marathoner will tell you, that is not what is supposed to happen at such an occasion or any place for that matter. Marathons bring out the best in mankind. Just read the signs that the spectators spend time making for the runners and the fact that the majority of the people they are cheering on are complete strangers. I have always been grateful for all the fan who have been out to cheer me on at races…friends, family and strangers alike. They are the fuel to keep our legs moving, our brains from saying no and our hearts from not believing. Kathrine Switzer, the female runner who defied the odds by running in the all-male Boston Marathon many years ago said it best, “If you are losing faith in human nature, go out and watch a marathon.”
In times like these, I am reminded of what the Bible tells us: “In God, whose word I praise—in God I trust and am not afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?” Psalm 56:4 NIV
I trust that the spirit of the marathon will not wither from this tragedy, but only serve to make the bond between spectator and runner that much stronger. Let us remember the reason we run in the first place…not for victory and glory in our own abilities but for a greater bond in celebrating the human race.