Honorable Mention

One of my most vivid childhood memories was the time I entered the science fair. It was intense. I was in kindergarten, so you can imagine how involved I was in putting together my project. Well, long story short, my Dad welded a cage together and hung magnets with varying lengths of string throughout. It was awesome. You moved one magnet and they attracted and repelled like crazy. My favorite part was shaking the cage and watching everything go nuts. I think that was my unplanned grand finale during my presentation. I figured that move was sure to push me over the top. I remember looking up at the judge as if to say, "Did I win!?" Well, when we arrived back at school that night, the consolation ribbon on my project said, "Honorable Mention."

I got to thinking about that old science fair recently. I didn't place, but I got a ribbon. I didn't leave empty-handed.

You know, when we say "grace is enough," it's not a consolation prize. It's not a pillow for our letdown. I mean, we have our goals in life; career, relationships, even those of health and fitness, and if we don't achieve them, we know that grace is enough, right? But grace is still higher than any goal we could ever dream of, let alone achieve. And the older I get I'm finding that there’s more joy and power in preceding any goal -  fitness or otherwise - with that immeasurable truth. It's beyond comforting, yes, but I guess the key I'm learning is to check my goals at the cross first and then allow them to be molded under and bolster my ability to celebrate the only One that can satisfy, and that's Jesus. Feel me? Empty-handed grace. Not a consolation prize for unfulfilled fitness goals. It is the prize. All else is honorable mention, and most of the time, not.
-Jimmy Peña

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