Monday, August 10, 2009


i made it. and i feel almost as overwhelmed as i did before the race, but in the best possible way. i had such a great time: the weather was perfect, i had no bike wipe-outs, i met all of my time goals (37 min swim, 3:34 bike, 2:29 run), and i didn't come in last place.

i learned a few especially powerful things last weekend. let me share them with you in an orderly fashion:

1. prayer is effective. i woke up on saturday morning feeling well-rested, confident, and calm: the things i had been lacking. i don't think i have ever felt so physically the impact of people praying for me. but it was truly evident and i appreciated it so much.

2. it's worth it. hard work, disicpline, tears (lots of tears -- emily can attest to this), and even spandex, lead to great accomplishments. i was the girl who pretended to be sick to get out of running the mile in gym class. this athletic stuff is not something that comes easy for me, and it's scary at times. but it's exciting when you look self-doubt in the face and say, "go away self-doubt, just go away." it's funny how often i need to be reminded of that. and i wonder what else i would do if i said it more often.

3. everyone needs a fan club. you've been in mine, cheering me on and telling me i could do it. but there was also a group that represented you in person on the course. and they were wearing orange and holding signs and making a spectacle every time i was in sight (even distant sight)...just like you would have. they made me feel great. i wouldn't have done nearly as well, or had nearly as much fun, without them. and it reminded me of the kind of person i want to be -- an encourager, an empowerer, a spectacle-maker -- on even the most average of days. the difference it makes in a person's life is immeasurable.

so thanks for being a part of this: for praying, donating, cheering, calling. i appreciate you.

Friday, March 20, 2009

You in?

Okay friends. It's time. If you've read any of the posts on this blog, you already know that running a marathon with Team World Vision is a life changing experience. No question about it. So it's sort of selfish of me to keep this to myself, don't you think?

There are lots of reasons not to try: it's time-consuming, it's scary, it's pricey. And it is all of those things, at times. But I wouldn't encourage people to do it if it wasn't completely worth every minute, every tear, and every dollar.

If you're looking for a new challenge, if you want to get in better shape, if you want to help change lives in Africa, do this. You won't regret it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

done and done.

Don't tell me this doesn't make you want to run a marathon.

Check out a few more pictures here...

Saturday, September 20, 2008

the big day.

today was the big day. 20. the longest run pre-marathon.

i joined team world vision at the lakefront group run for a bit of extra support. i got more than a bit.

at mile 16ish, we caught up with some teammates and found them praying out loud as they ran. they were asking for strength to finish the run, but also for the children in zambia we are running for who completely lack the water and sustenance that we were craving by that point.

we separated then, but we kept praying. i found myself speechless mid-prayer, overwhelmed by this incredible experience. running a marathon is life-changing in itself. but i was suddenly humbled to be doing it with a group of people who are actively loving God and loving others, and showing me what it means to care for the poor with our resources and time and thoughts and gifts and even our physical bodies.

in this case, it means people in zambia drinking clean water for the first time.

it's easy to question whether or not we can actually do anything of value. whether or not we can change the world. and that's why today was exciting. because i caught a glimpse of what can happen when we stop questioning and start believing. and not just believing, but doing.

i know i, for one, want to be in the midst.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

lean in.

today, after working at world vision for 3 years, i attended new employee orientation. i guess the hr representative kind of knows what she's up against when she walks into a room because she opened with this about the sessions:

"you can choose to endure, or you can choose to lean in."

and i started to think about how often i have that choice.

tonight i ran a great 6 miles. my best. because i chose to lean in.

what could happen, what could i learn, how could other people be affected, if that's the decision i made more often than not? even in new employee orientation.

Friday, August 8, 2008

1 billion people.

So here's the deal: I can say I am a runner because of Team World Vision. I care a lot about what we do as an organization, enough that I would run a marathon, twice. Running affects me in all kinds of significant ways. But it also affects families in Africa, and that's really why I do it.

I got to travel to Ethiopia with World Vision a couple of summers ago. All of the footage in this video is from that trip. These are real people and real problems. But there are also real solutions. Will you help?

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


My summer has been marked by significant changes. But they've been of an indirect sort. I've felt like things and people have been whirling around me while I am standing still. And as a result, I've found myself confused about where I fit, what I'm doing, who I am, who I want to be.

This weekend I had an epiphany: I have the freedom to choose. I can choose to be kind and generous, to live creatively and discuss fascinating things, to pursue truth, to reflect glory. And I can begin to become who I want to be today; I can make something happen.

Beth and I were talking on our run the other night. She said, "Every day, I have to decide to run." Guilt from yesterday's skipped workout or pride about tomorrow's impressive mileage don't matter so much. It's about making the right decision today.

So today, I choose change. What about you?

"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." 2 Cor 3.17