I am now home from a fabulous two-week trip with my mom to London and France! And France far exceeded all my expectations! :) The people were so warm, the food was phenomenal, the smells of spring were incredible and it was simply beautiful. We were able to visit Calais and Arras with two friends of ours and had such a wonderful time. I look forward to being able to go back some day! ;) And London was London. How can you not love London?! Even though it literally rained every day we were there, London did not disappoint. The Colour Conference was fantastic! It was so inspiring to worship with more than 5,000 women in a nearly packed out Wimbley Arena, listen to dynamic speakers from around the world and hear stories of how countless lives are being impacted all over the globe by people who value the life of "the other".
After arriving home Friday evening and having dinner with dad to catch him up on all our travels, I woke up early Saturday morning for the Strides for Sara 5+K that a handful of us had organized in memory of Sara and to continue to raise support for the Tiedeman Recovery Fund. The event could not have been more successful! Despite the gloomy weather (it must have followed me home from London), we had nearly 200 participants and had a surprise visitor: Chris!
Three weeks ago, I saw Chris sitting in a wheel chair only being able to walk about 20 feet down a hallway with assistance. Now, just three weeks later, I watched him walk all over the race grounds that we were at!
There's also a great short video on my facebook wall of him actually walking! Check it out if you have time.
It still takes a lot of concentration for Chris to be able to walk and he has to keep his mind focused on it. There will come a day soon though when it will be as natural again as breathing. The perseverance that he has shown blows my mind. For what once was a natural thing that he never had to really think about doing, is now something he's having to intentionally re-learn how to do in the midst of a time of grieving. Every day he puts his mind to practicing walking so that he can get stronger and overcome this current obstacle.
It's not unlike life. Suddenly, circumstances change, tragedies occur, bad decisions were made, and what we were once able to do without much thought is suddenly a challenge. And unless we face the challenge with perseverance and decide to intentionally work at it and set our mind to it, we could be overcome by it. But when we allow that to happen, we lose, and not just us, but those around us, and really the world in which we live. When we aren't fully alive, everyone loses. It doesn't have to be that way though. While it may take setting our mind to it and persevering, we too can be overcomers, especially with the help of God. Our Maker and Creator longs to see each of us living out our full potential, despite the obstacles that we face in this very imperfect world where evil, hurt and disappointment all too often get the best of us because we allow them to. Until that day, may we persevere just like Chris!