Sunday, July 15, 2012

Everything is going to be okay!

Turn on the television, watch the evening news and you might think that the world could come to an end today. Banks are failing, the presidential race makes everyone mad, violence is on the rise -- everywhere you turn, the news seems bad. But I am writing this blog post to tell you that I, for one, feel everything is going to be okay. Let me tell you why. 

This summer, I have had the lucky privilege to spend a lot of time with young people ages 18-29. And let me be of good cheer, there are some amazing people looking to lead our future.

In June, I led a small group in Bible study in a local suburban subdivision. We encouraged the mothers attending to bring their daughters. Two moms took us up on that offer, and two lovely young women named Morgan showed up.

Morgan on the left is a sophomore in college, and Morgan on the right will be a a senior in high school. Spending Tuesday nights with these gals was one of the enjoyable surprises of the summer. They are sharp, articulate, funny and optimistic. It was a joy to get to know them!

In late May, our family spent a couple of days at the beach with my son and a few of his college friends. Two of them will be attending law school, two more will attend medical school, others have already started their new careers. These guys are smart, well-rounded, have a strong faith, and are extremely good-looking (smile).

At home in Kansas City, our family spent hours with other kids on our backyard lake. These kids are our future teachers, accountants, financial experts, construction builders and mothers. 

My niece, a twenty-something, is growing fast in her career as an event planner. She has chosen to use most of her vacation time to travel with me this fall as we will visit Africa and train women in micro-finance. People, we are in good shape!  

So far, this summer has been nothing short of amazing for me. Surrounded by the future, I have been encouraged, entertained, and, truthfully, stress-free. So, if you are wondering if our country is going to be okay, I hope you will spend some time with our young people. You will see for yourself -- our future is pretty bright. 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

My first 5K

Halfway there!
I really don't get the whole 5K thing, but boy, is it ever popular. So like groupies, my husband and I signed up for our first 5K run (walk). We couldn't think of a better cause than The House of Hope's Hope Challenge 5K.  

So, up at 6 a.m. on a Saturday morning, half asleep, we journeyed down to the Plaza and picked up our packet. Pinning the numbers on our shirt made us official. We watched as the true racers warmed up. Some had jogged over for the 5K. Me? I sat on the bench with another newbie and waited for race time.

Not long after, the crowd lined up. The gun sounded and off we went with the rest of the mob. I remember Steve commenting, "If we are going to do this, let's get some exercise." We picked up the pace. 

Not long into the race, we saw Polly and John, cheerleaders for the race. We hugged, but there was no time for chatting; we were racing! People passed us, we passed a few, but mostly, our pace remained steady. As we approached the half-way point, we saw other familiar faces: Julie and Audrey, my niece and her friend who were also cheerleaders. Julie snapped this photo -- proof that we made it at least halfway.

As we rounded the final curve, we could see the finish line. All kinds of people were waving and cheering us across. We made it! "Get some refreshments," they told us. A Chick-fil-A chicken biscuit? Why didn't they tell me? I would have walked much faster.

After the race, we reflected...a beautiful morning, good exercise, and a great cause. Sign me up for next year!