i was sitting in church earlier tonight when our pastor told us that pastor ferdie cabiling, "the running pastor", is already on his last day of run today. that means he ran 50 miles a day every day for 50 days, covering the whole stretch of the country -- from saranggani to appari. that's quite a distance, especially when i compare it to my 3-kilometer treadmill runs that i even complain about. (don't ask.)
i got to sit down with pastor ferdie the day before he flew to saranggani, his starting point. it was a casual conversation, but his passion for God and for what he does is just so inspiring i couldn't help but ask myself, "how about me? what do i do? how meaningful can my life be?" he was to run a total of 2,180 kilometers to raise funds for Real Life Foundation -- for young people hopeful for a bright future. in a sense, his run solidifies their hopes! what's more, he is able to encourage and move people like me to do more and be more.
a lot of people love running. in fact, pastor ferdie does too! he said that running in a new place is a treat for him, and that running across the Philippines is a raw adventure! he talked about his favorite pairs of shoes, the physical preparations, his diet, and even the technicalities of running a marathon. but this lifestyle goes beyond being healthy or having a hobby. because he is fueled by God's love for him and His people, he is able to challenge himself to do outrageous things and run thousands of miles, of course all with a purpose.
one of my favorite stories from our conversation was about his son, John Philip, who can't run like you and me. pastor ferdie told us that years back, while in the middle of a marathon in Pangasinan, he wanted to simply give up. he was tired, and couldn't seem to find any reason to go on. but he remembered John Philip, how he has sturge weber syndrome and is unable to run. pastor ferdie then decided to finish the race, with renewed energy from his love for his boy. since then, the thought of running for those who can't has become his inspiration to go on and go farther.
pastor ferdie is a man who likes to be challenged. after running across the country for 50 days straight, i wonder what his next goal is. no distance is too far for a runner who runs with a purpose that serves the glory of Jesus.
"and as your days, so shall your strength be." - deutoronomy 33:25
give to real life foundation through the run50 marathon here: