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Running into the hearts of Marion

Special to the Marion County Record

When Adam Stewart asked me to write a column for the newspaper, I was excited and said, “Yes!”

Then came the process of actually writing a column. It’s not nearly as easy as it appeared it might be.

It’s one thing to write a sermon each week where my material from which to draw has been in place for hundreds and thousands of years. When it comes to writing a column for this publication, I am limited to my own experiences in the recent past.

I’ll begin this column by introducing myself. I am blessed to serve the Marion Presbyterian congregation as their pastor. I am married to an amazing woman, Danielle (“Dani”). We have two kids: Sadie, age six, and Keenan, age 3. I am originally from Tucson, Ariz., went to college in Tucson at the University of Arizona and Spokane, Wash., at Whitworth College, and graduated from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, Calif. Monday will mark six years that we have lived in Marion.

One of my hobbies is running. I know I don’t look like the person you have a mental image of as being a runner. A few years ago, I confessed at church that as a child on through high school, I was a runner, but after college and seminary, my running days appeared to be behind me. Some of the guys from the church encouraged me and told me that if I worked at it I would be back out there running again someday.

They were absolutely right. Over the course of the last three years I have completed each annual edition of the Run For Your Momma half-marathon, a few of the Chingawassa Days Rhino Runs, a couple of the Old Settlers’ Day 5-kilometer runs, and most recently the Dam Run for Education. Along with those I have done runs in Hillsboro, Wichita, and Wildwood Crest, N.J.

I share this information because I thoroughly enjoy it, and I think that each person can find an activity that keeps them active and that they enjoy. It might be swimming, biking, walking, running, bowling, or who knows what. The temptation of our culture is to become very sedentary and inactive. With temperatures getting colder and people not as likely to get outside, keep in mind that we have an excellent walking/running track and an indoor pool, as well as other opportunities to stay active. I hope to “run” into others around town!

Last modified Nov. 9, 2011

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