Friday, March 25, 2011

Race set before us

My sweet running partners, Kasey, Kali and Vanessa brought this awesome bag of goodies over for this race weekend.  

Guess what?!

THIS Sunday morning is RACE DAY!!!  Exactly 34 hours away actually.

I don't really know if I will ever be "ready", so I am glad it will be here and done very soon! :)  It's been an amazing journey... starting out at not being able to run a mile... and now about to run 13.1.  (That's like 2.25-2.5 hours of running!)  Although a great test of strength, I can honestly say I am relieved it's almost over.

Erin and I will be running for HOPE.

Being a part of two separate 501(c)3 organizations can be kinda messy.  When I say messy, I mean I take for granted the fact that I know they are not one organization, but I don't make that clear to others.  For some reason people can't read my mind?!  I know, huh? 

Hope Mommies was founded by Erin and Blair Cushman, after their beautiful daughter Gwendolyn Hope went to her eternal Home.  I am incredibly blessed to be a very small part of Hope Mommies.  When Erin asked me to be on the Board, I was a little shocked and a lot humbled.  Hope Mommies is an organization that connects families who have lost their babies and ultimately shares with them the hope we have to be reunited with our children in heaven. 

The women I have met through Hope Mommies are some of the most amazing women on earth, and have completely changed my life.  When we first said goodbye to Holden, I incessantly googled topics like stillbirth, cord accidents, etc.  I was blown away by the amount of negative forums, groups and websites.  Bitterness and hate were such a common theme, sadly.  My heart hurt even more, reading the stories of extreme bitterness from other grieving parents.  Almost just as bad were the websites with extremely incorrect information and blame.  Despite the majority of negative websites, I was blessed to meet several Godly, beautiful women who insisted on living on the hope and plans our Saviour promises us, rising above indescribable pain...

I cannot tell you how precious it is to be a part of Hope Mommies.  70 babies are stillborn each day in the United States.  That does not include the hundreds of babies who pass in the NICU as well.  I just read Holly's blog, and am once again thanking the Lord for his mercy and grace.  I pray that the family of that sweet little girl will receive His peace that passes our understanding.  

Hope Mommies truly exemplifies beauty from ashes

Holden Uganda Foundation was founded by J.D. and Kara Smith, as well as Chet and me in December.  I think with anything that has my child's name all over it, it is obviously dear and special.  In God's extreme goodness and grace, He led us into a ministry to share His love with people across the world. 

Over 1 billion people (that is 1 in 6 people on this planet) are sick and dying from the unclean water they are forced to ingest.  Pretty impactful if you think of your own children drinking from a poop puddle.  (I know that is a terrible mental picture, but it is the cold truth.)

The wells are so simple, yet completely change the dynamics of the people they are serving.  Clean water does not just stop illness and death, it changes communities.  When you remove illness, you add productivity and vitality.  The villages these wells are built in are able to work, learn and be educated...all because they are not using every ounce of energy battling illness.  One of our goals is that children will be able to attend school, instead of spending 10 hours a day fetching unclean water. 

Each well also shares the love of Christ.  I am a FIRM believer that it is far more authentic to show someone love through actions than words.  Far more substantial is the gift of life-saving water to a dying person, than words of love.  

The wells on our general fund list are all dedicated to children who have gone to be with Jesus before their parents.  Obviously this touches us in a way that only a grieving parent can fully understand.

Holden Uganda has been able to turn sorrow into joy

Any moment I am around parents and their children, my deepest wish is that they understand the gift they have.  I know I will be thinking of all the babies in my life, especially the ones born over this past year, on Sunday.  I am so grateful for the healthy children in my life.

I write this with the most grateful heart.  Without you, we would not be able to have these ministries.  You have shown His love in such a spectacular way.  It gives me chills to think about...I praise the Lord for you, and pray for blessings to be multiplied in your lives.

Let us run with patience the race that is set before us.  Hebrews 12:1b


  1. Good Luck on Sunday! You are such an amazing person :)

  2. What a perfect quote for so many reasons!!! Have an amazing run. From what I know of come at life with such grace. No doubt, you will run this race the same way!!! Take care...