The Runner

He was a runner. Before I could walk he was a runner.

I was always fast, but he could beat me at the mile.

I once ran a marathon at age 31. His marathon time in his sixties beat mine.

Often when I would visit, he would register me for a race. I can still remember being woken too early, sleepily shuffling to his little hatchback car, and heading off for a race. I still have the trophies.

He used to go through running shoes like paper plates. He’d wear them a little and then pass them along to me. They were only slightly worn but no good for racing. I don’t know how many of his shoes I wore over the years. Dozens.

He held state records. He had a dresser covered with so many trophies and plaques you couldn’t see the top. Mugs, medals, T-shirts, treadmills, inserts, water bottles, bibs…he was a runner…

Today, he lost part of his leg.

Through complications of age and circulation, it had to go they said. And so it did. And so is the tragedy of this broken world.

But he’ll always be a runner.

“Those who trust in the Lord will find new strength…They will run and not grow weary.”

So now we will wait more eagerly for the restoration of all things, the hope of the gospel.

Until then, I know he will finish his race well. My granddad, the runner.

Published by

Derek Griz

I am a Christian, a husband, a father, and a pastor (Immanuel Church). I write from those perspectives. Connect with me on Twitter (@derekgriz).

2 thoughts on “The Runner”

  1. Why did you have to write something that would make me cry all the way through it? I remember you two racing together. I remember going to watch with nana. Didn’t know in his sixties he ran a marathon faster than you did at 31.

  2. Derek, this is such a wonderful tribute! He has always been so proud of you and now your beautiful family!

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