Winded and completely frazzled I drew my head slowly from the coldness of the sidewalk. My mind was racing as I was met by stares from onlookers from the safety of their vehicles. As I laid there, outstretched and face planted on the ground, I felt a gentle breeze rush over my bloody elbow and bruised knees. I no longer felt the urge to complete the rest of my run. 

My mind raced with how exactly to pickup my body, like any professional runner could easily do and actually make it look like I was confident. I wanted the eyes I felt staring at my self-esteem to leave surprised by my endurance. Yes, driver in the red jeep, I dare you to fall and rise back up without shedding a tear like this mom has today. 

I wanted so badly to sink into the ground at that moment, allow the tears to come and disappear into a sink hole. I felt completely embarrassed and all alone. 

Suddenly, I felt burning across the front of my body that was, yes indeed, still plastered on the sidewalk. Lifting myself up in exhaustion, I noticed freshly painted skid marks…my bloody skid marks! My body not only fell, but it was moving fast enough to actually bend the law of motion! This new running hobby was making a positive difference indeed! As a grin met my face, I made sure to meet the onlooker in the red jeep that was applauding from his window. 

After I felt God rise my groan into laughter, I remembered it was safe to exhale. This was not the end of my world, nor the end of my run for the day. I was a change in progress and falls were guaranteed to happen. I will be breathing in His love and exhaling His grace to myself and others throughout this journey. Step by step He is making me new. I just need to remember to breathe in the midst of falling. 

Onlookers don’t care how fast we manage to run through life. Those watching you notice the way you rise after you fall. Do you hold your breath in fear or can you breathe in His promises and exhale onward? I’m learning that it’s finally safe to exhale because He has a lot more coming. Falls do not define us. May the One you run with and soar for breathe His life into you today. 


This is my first week linking up with Lisa Jo Baker for “5 Minute Friday.” Five minutes of writing on a given phrase without editing. Today’s phrase was “exhale.” 

Bonus – I took my skidding fall last Wednesday and today I managed to run my usual 6 mile route (a bit slower, but mission completed!). My boys love counting my bruises from my new hobby! 


Bethany is an ICF trained Certified Professional Christian Life Coach (Christian Coach Institute Graduate), Motivational and Inspirational Speaker, mentor to women and an author. Bethany defines herself as a child of God who loves to use her passion for change to inspire others. She has overcome disabilities, wading through the trials and rewards of marriage and motherhood. She enjoys being a wife to Steve for 10 years and mother to three boys (ages 7, 5 and 2). She is a double brain cancer survivor, a 9 year veteran in the field of youth and children's ministry and has published poetry, featured blog posts for numerous ministry websites and children's ministry curriculum contributions. Bethany is currently working on her first book to be released this Fall as well as various freelancing projects. Bethany always welcomes new coaching clients and speaking opportunities!

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

12 thoughts on “Exhale

  1. Bethany I love this: “Onlookers don’t care how fast we manage to run through life. Those watching you notice the way you rise after you fall. Do you hold your breath in fear or can you breathe in His promises and exhale onward?” What a good reminder of what really matters, and especially as I think of the example I create for my little girls…glad I was able to enjoy your first FMF post πŸ™‚

    • Emily,
      Thanks so much! I’m just now catching-up on a few comments I must have overlooked! So sorry for the delay! Your encouragement meant so much to me tonight! Thank you!

  2. Oh, sweet girl. You are my hero today! I am so proud of you for taking up this running and then taking up from whence you fell to continue on and run 6 miles today!
    Amen! ~ “Falls do not define us. May the One you run with and soar for breathe His life into you today.”
    By the way, today is my first 5-minute Friday as well.
    May we pick ourselves up from falls knowing that Christ is the One with His arms underneath our armpits, pulling us up.
    Caring through Christ, ~ linda

  3. Often when something resonates with me as much as your post did, I quote the part that touched me most in the comments. We’re I to do that with yours, I would simply be re-typing the post. So I will just say, thank you for sharing, thank you for being honest, and thank you for the reminders of the truth in Him. Praying blessings on you and your family. And your running. πŸ™‚ So glad that you chose to join us on Five Minute Friday.

    • Kelli –
      Your comment blew me away. There is nothing I love to read than when God takes an experience from my life and somehow relates it to a life somewhere else. It’s something I love to experience myself, yet it’s something only God can do. So incredibly humbling and exciting! Thank you for your comment!

  4. Welcome to FMF, Bethany. When I saw your face on the link-up, I recognized you from Compel so I had to stop by and say, “hello.” πŸ˜‰ This is beautiful and I’m glad to hear your ok after your fall! It is so true that people pay attention to how we rise, not how we fall. I’m forever grateful for his grace and his continual work in me, even when I fall. Thanks for sharing.

    • Abby –
      I am SO glad we have connected! I added your blog to my reading list a few weeks ago and when I noticed your comment tonight I just felt humbled! Thank you for your encouragement! I love this networking!

  5. I loved this. I have a dreadful fear of falling but not so much when running, I don’t know why. Maybe because it hasn’t happened yet! And this sentence: ‘After I felt God rise my groan into laughter, I remembered it was safe to exhale.’ That is wonderful. I felt your humbling, the pain, the setback but also the power of your faith, your dignity (yes, dignity!) and the humour. The humour that runs throughout this post is going to send me trawling through the archives. Such a find on a rainy Friday evening when I’m pretending to be interested in the football!

    • Juliet –
      Talk about humor – you had me laughing out loud tonight! I am blown away by your words and I can’t wait to add your blog to my reading list as well! Sorry it took longer than normal to respond – still trying to learn the tech blogging aspect of things!

    • Hope –
      You have always been a constant, steady encouragement to me. Love ya girl! Thank you for being the first to leave a comment!

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