Mind the Gap

I would like to start writing about my experience in Kenya this year with one of the most personally powerful experiences I had while there this year. I shared this story with our group during our de-briefing session on one of our last days in Kenya, but would like to elaborate and expand upon it here…..

When I was 17 years old, I left my faith. I felt no connection to God, and couldn’t continue to stay in something I didn’t believe in. For the next 20 years I continued down my own path, carving out my own beliefs and convictions through life experiences, but in no way was I connected spiritually to anything….

In Jan 2007, my little sister and best friend was hit by a car accidentally while she was jogging. She had no ID on her, and I remember watching the news story that night about it, and felt in my heart it was her, but didn’t want to believe it. It wasn’t until my Mom called me early the next morning asking me if I knew where she was, that I knew it was her on the news the night before….

As we kissed her and whispered our goodbyes into her ear before we took her off life support, I bent down and whispered to her ” I love you sis, but it should have been me…”, and I cursed God for what he had allowed to happen.

I few months later, I started to come to the  realization that I wanted to do more with my life, and in wanting to try to connect with my community and feel meaning and purpose, I started running 5K’s in my sister’s memory. Which brought me to the World of Difference 5K in Sept 2008. I remember when I first told Ranger and Jodi about the circumstances surrounding how I found out about their organization, they commented on how funny it was that life works in the way that it does…..
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THE NIGHT WE ALL REMEMBER

While working on the schools in the slums of Nairobi this year, we reached the point of completing our roof structure model at Isaac’s, and thus started the back breaking process of mixing ingredients for cement,
 
shoveling it in buckets, and lifting it up to the roof, thus pouring the buckets into the mold.
This was all done by hand, with forty white people working together with the Kenyan community towards a common goal.
 
Several hours into this, our team was silently screaming for a break. We were worn out, exhausted,dehydrated, and defeated (physically and emotionally). I personally felt that my body could not lift one more bucket, I could not shovel any more cement, and I thought I was going to die. I couldn’t do any more, even though i wanted not to quit.
As we took a short break, I went to Isaac, and asked him to come into a back room of the school. Once there, I broke down, and begged Isaac to say a prayer for me, and the team. I’ve never, ever, asked anyone to pray for me in my entire life.
Isaac & I
I could barely stand as Isaac grabbed both of my hands and offered a prayer to God. His words were so powerful. As his prayer was ending, I could feel strength soaring through my body, my eyes were brimming with tears of joy, and my soul felt a warmth I’ve never known before.
I realized that although my gap with God was miles away ( in my eyes) that his higher power has never left me. I knew in that moment that God guided me to the World of Difference 5K, answered all the prayers that helped me to recover a week before our expedition, and that he has brought me to Africa to help me learn of the power I have inside myself to help others thru service.
I am so thankful to have narrowed this Gap.
 And for all those who were a part of it.

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2 Comments

Wench, bring my ale, what say you?