Running for 2.5 million Kenyan Children


2012 Bank of America Chicago Marathon

Chicago, Illinois

Running for 2.5 million Kenyan Children

Thank you for visiting my fundraising page!

Last year, I proved to myself that I could finish a marathon after a long break.  (7 years!) We raised $2000 for Prentice Hospital in the process.  This year, my heart led me to make a change and it's not small.  I want to build an orphanage in Kenya. Will you help me?

Why orphans?  Simple:  Jesus loves the children.

Longer version of the story:
After my mom died, I was a little haunted.  The funeral director told me that she had a smile on her face, which isn't natural.  (I guess our muscles around our mouth naturally turn down when we die.)  For a while, that gave me peace.  But later I began to doubt.  What if heaven wasn't real?  That would be the ultimate disappointment.  Knowing that my mom believed it to be true and that it gave her a sense of calm during her last days -- well, if it wasn't true that would really suck.  It would super suck.

A few months later I was spammed on Linked In about a book.  "Heaven is for Real."  It's the story of a little boy who -- you guessed it -- died and went to heaven and came back.  For those of you who know me well, I never read biographies or self help or business books.  I find them so terribly boring.  However, I felt a need to download the book to my kindle and I read the entire book that night.  In the book, the little boy tells his dad (paraphrased), "Jesus loves the children.  I mean he really loves the children."

All night & throughout the next morning I kept hearing, "he really loves the children" in my head.  Over and over.  Then, during church, they were asking for volunteers in the children's program.  So I thought, "Got it.  That's why that book came into my life.  (1) To make me believe and (2) I need to volunteer."  So I did.  If God was sending me a message, I wasn't going to ignore Him.  I've read the Bible.  Ignoring God is a very bad idea.  Just ask Jonah.

About a year later, Ann Smith and one of her daughter's visited a Chapel classroom where I was volunteering and told the story of the children who live with her family on The Hill.  (That's what they call the orphanage.)  That night I told Barry that I thought we should sponsor one of the high school students.  He rolled his eyes.  But the next morning when Rick Smith shared the story of The Hill during church service, Barry gave me the look & I knew that he felt the same tug at his heart.  We adopted Emily (the beautiful girl in the pink shirt) that week.  

But that wasn't enough for me.  Please visit the Oasis for Orphans web site and read about the children.  As I watch my children grow and laugh and play, I think of the children who live on The Hill who, because of the generosity of a few, are able to grow and laugh and play and learn in a safe and loving environment.  

Please consider donating to support this important cause.  

Many thanks for your support -- and don't forget to forward this to anyone who you think might want to donate too!

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