Theme of the Week: Running the Race Toward Joy

Hebrews 12:1-2 tells us:

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us rid ourselves of every burden and sin that clings to us and persevere in running the race that lies before us while keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the leader and perfecter of faith. For the sake of the joy that lay before him he endured the cross, despising its shame, and has taken his seat at the right of the throne of God.

We welcome our guest blogger, Kathy Szymanski, whose story is presented here in three parts so that we can absorb the full measure of her teaching on life as a marathon. This amazing woman is a cradle Catholic, wife, mother of 7 ages 8-32, and grandmother to 6 who lives in Minnesota. A former missionary and homeschooler, she is now a life coach, marathon runner and writer of inspirational fiction. For ten years she has had neck and throat cancer, has a tracheotomy and is physically unable to speak. She proclaims, “Joy! A wonderful thing! I’m all for it! The only true lasting joy is in the Lord!” She blogs at It's Your Life-It's Your Marathon.

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About Nancy Ward

Nancy HC Ward is a journalist, author, and speaker who blogs about Catholicism, her conversion, and Christian community at,
 7 websites and 7 magazines. She loves to share her faith story and help others share theirs through her Sharing Your Faith Stories seminars, also available on DVD. She contributed four chapters to The Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion. She facilitates the Dallas/Fort Worth Catholic Writers and a critique group for the Catholic Writers Guild, where she serves as a board member.
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2 Responses to Theme of the Week: Running the Race Toward Joy

  1. Diane says:

    Looking at the Word on Fire blog site, the blogger reported a story regarding the Arlington Convention. He started the blog with "Moses doubted his speaking ability so he provided Aaron to speak for him." Sounds familiar……another confirmation from the Holy Spirit reminding me that God is indeed present in my life and calling me to listen and be not afraid to follow his lead. Yesterday I was drawn to meditate on Hebrews 12:1-12 and this morning I open your site to see you quoting Hebrews 12:1-2! These two God-incidences brought a smile of Joy to my heart!

    • Nancy says:

      Yes, the Catholic New Media Conference Father Steve Grunow writes about was awesome because the many inspirational speakers were on fire with the joy of the Lord. The whole atmosphere was joyful, with mass everyday and an adoration chapel set up near the conference rooms. Both the homilies and instructional talks called us forth to share our faith unafraid and to call others closer to the Lord. Attending both the New Media and Catholic Writers Conferences (held simultaneously with the Catholic Marketing Network Trade Show) was like trying to drink from a waterfall. Now my heart tells me to meditate on those moments of joy and integrate them into my everyday life. Like Moses, we must not doubt our ability to influence others. We have the Internet as our Aaron to carry the message to those whose hearts the Holy Spirit has prepared to receive our words.

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