A guest post from Ed Deiss:
Stories, they connect and they bind. It is about where we came from and where we’re going; the story of God and mankind, amongst love and fear and failure, that we make meaning of our lives. It’s what allows us to connect with each another, to truly know and be known. Nothing is so warm and inviting, yet so challenging and poignant, as a powerful story, told well. They are to be shared not only for our own sake, but for the benefit of others; stories change people.
I think about what Jeff Goins said about the power of a story as I run #megsmiles, and I have never run so much in my life since January 18th, 2014. I live a few miles down the road from the Menzies and Cross families in Hanover, Virginia. Having never run more than 5 miles continuously in my life, that week in January 2014, I signed up to run Meg’s Miles and have not stopped. Even did first half marathon this past fall, with another one slated for this spring.
When I think of #megsmiles, the group and the purpose, I think of the power of a story and the fact that there are no ordinary lives. As the days become long and the years short along the road of our adventures and journeys through life, I’m sure those reading can relate that we’re going to encounter bumps and jagged rocks as we climb through the years. Many of them hurt, scar, and can leave us sore and bruised. However we can choose to see all the bumps, bruises, and scars not in terms of the damage they caused, rather as providing focus to a higher plane of living; they make you strong. #megstrong.
I have run three times on Hickory Hill, the streets where Meg and Scott would run. I will never forget my run there the day Scott ran the 2014 Boston Marathon through Meg’s eyes, defining the true meaning of 1 Corinthians 13. A mile in, I stopped with the sun setting over a scenic Hanover farm field as I could not continue. It was as if I was punched in the gut and not having any air, I openly wept while hunched over with hands on my knees. I came to face my own reflections of being raised by a single parent and almost having my mom’s life taken right before my eyes, and struggled to come to terms with what occurred to Meg, Scott, their children and their families that January day. How to keep moving when the fog of a broken heart disorients and makes it hard to see the road? Faith, the assurance of things hoped for, conviction of things not seen.
It was Scott’s journey and run that day that manifested itself, it was friends and connections through #megsmiles, it was being grateful for family and friends that are always there. I was able to get back to it and keep running. Grew stronger that day; thanks Scott and Meg. Thanks #megsmiles. I wrote before my first half marathon a letter to Meg, “…you have brought together so many lives and changed them, more than you will ever know. You have encouraged me to live life to the fullest, have no regrets, honor myself, and invest in the lives of others. You have encouraged me in my faith, and the faith to carry on. What I have also learned from you is that lives can impact others, even those we have not met…know you are running where the streets have no name. There will be a day Meg, when I will be making that run as well…save some room. Look forward to it.
Whether it’s posting running maps, deciding where to meet up, or letting someone know where I live, have to use a street name. Streets and neighborhoods are part of who we are; and running #megsmiles we all can go there with someone, even though have never been. It bonds and unites across time zones, countries, ethnicities and nationalities. How great it is to run and go somewhere where everyone comes together, where we can get to know each other and relate about what matters regardless of street names and neighborhoods. Running #megsmiles, I go there with you. We all can go. I’m grateful for another gift not found under the Christmas tree.
A guest post from Kathy Poling:
When I read what had happened to Meg I was heartbroken for her family, for the loss of such a beautiful young wife,mommy,daughter,amazing runner, & child of God. I did not know Meg but the stories I have read have touched my heart. I am most affected by Megs story in the picture she painted of Gods grace in the way she lived her life. I've seen that picture through the stories some of you have shared and an interview that I watched her husband Scott give. I don't remember Scotts exact words but he spoke about how Meg would want others to know about Jesus more than anything else. I love the stories of how Meg had a servants heart and worked in childrens ministry. Megsmiles is an amazing group of people...may we carry on Megs gift of being an encourager and an extender of Gods grace.
Has your life been impacted by the death of Meg Menzies. Please share your story.
Since January, thousands of lives have been impacted by the death of Meg Menzies. Many of us have been overwhelmed with sadness. But many of us have also found love and hope and encouragement at a time we needed it most. As we've learned more about who Meg was and accepted the call to share her legacy with the world, the stories of our lives have been forever changed. And we've seen lives around us change.
If your life has been impacted by Meg's death, I invite you to share your story at the link below. It's my hope our stories will bring comfort and maybe an occasional smile to the Menzies and Cross families who greatly miss Meg, especially so over this holiday season.
Submit your story here.