I’m so grateful for the many writing opportunities that God has given me. I frequently thank Him for the two daily devotional books I’ve had published and for the two-book contract that I’m completing now. Still, I find myself dreaming of doing a different type of writing—another genre that seems so out of my league that I’m embarrassed to admit it. Something that looks so difficult and daunting that it seems impossible. And when I think about impossible dreams, I always think of Kathrine Switzer.
In 1967 the application for the Boston Marathon didn’t ask for participants’ gender. After all, the race had always been for males only; few people believed that a woman was even capable of running twenty-six miles. A twenty-year-old Syracuse University junior knew better. The Boston Athletic Association had no idea that K.V. Switzer was female when her coach picked up her number.
A few miles into the race, the press caught sight of Kathrine. A race official grabbed Kathrine, tried to rip off her number, and screamed at her to get out of “his” race. A body block from Kathrine’s burly boyfriend knocked the official aside while her coach urged her on from behind. Kathrine finished the race, although her time wasn’t recorded since all the officials had left. But the incident spurred Kathrine to dedicate her life to championing women in sports. Her work eventually helped pave the way for a women’s marathon in the Olympics.
I love Kathrine’s story because it’s a reminder that just because we consider something impossible doesn’t mean that it is. I also love the many stories in the Bible that show God’s delight in doing what is humanly “impossible”. Sarah laughed at the prospect of having a baby when she was ninety and her husband was a hundred years old. God challenged her response: “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” (Genesis 18:14)
Even when we’re sure that God has given us this “impossible” dream, there will be people trying to pull us off track. Maybe they have good intentions and don’t want to see us end up disappointed or hurt. Or maybe it’s our own doubts that hold us back. Like Kathrine, we have a Coach behind us, urging us to finish the race that’s marked out for us. If we listen, we’ll hear a voice reminding us that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13). So I’ll keep praying about my “impossible” dream and ask God to show me if it’s His will for me. Because if it is, I’m ready to start running.
How about you? Do you have a new goal for your writing ministry that seems impossible? Has God led you to a verse that encourages you when doubts and fears try to steal your dreams?