I think one of the best things about being a World Race parent is the expectancy of hearing about squad/ team activities at the end of each month. When the squads are on the move the pictures start posting, and the blogs begin. It is then I get to see all that has taken place in the previous month, not to mention you get to see pretty much every mode of travel known to man. The travel days appear to be both grueling and a ton of fun at the same time, as the racers discover new modes of transportation from around the world. They are on the move that is for sure. And it is evident, that in changing locations they leave a little of their hearts behind.
In the pictures you can feel the love of team members for one another and their hearts for the people they have been serving. The pictures of smiles on the faces of children are my favorite because they glow under the attention and love being poured out upon them. Many have such difficult lives and have experienced things we cannot even comprehend, yet the joyful smiles speak volumes to my daily life. If an orphan in Moldova can be overjoyed with one new outfit what do I, with my closet full of clothes, have to complain about? If a girl that has been used and abused in the sex trade in Thailand can have hope for her future why in the world do I worry about mine? If a boy in India can be grateful for ONE meal, how can I complain about no good restaurants? I am not even on the race…yet I am benefiting from it. It opens my eyes and my heart to my own narrow view, my spoiled way of life, and my lack of gratefulness. And while this might not be the most comfortable view of myself, it is one that I need to see.
The blogs add more reality checks…in a good way. The things the racers are seeing, doing, and experiencing are what Christianity looks like with hands and feet. It is sacrificial, and it serves. It doesn’t mind getting dirty. It loves no matter the circumstances. It is hard, but it is real. It is not platitudes, or clichés or hypocrisy. It is not saying one thing and doing another. It is heartbreaking, and humbling, and exhilaratingly alive. I merely have to read a few updated blogs to get a clear picture of how not easy it is to live this way… but how worth it. I could and I have read them for hours.
Then there are the videos. They just make me want to get on a plane and go…to experience the cultures, and people, and customs. That is a big thing for me, because I am someone who has never had a desire to leave my own country. I am content here. I am safe. I like it that way. But the images I see draw me into wondering if that is enough for me. If somehow I am missing the point entirely. I also realize I do not have to get on a plane to find needy people. The sex trade is alive and growing in our country. There are kids in poverty in my own area. Homelessness is not just in foreign countries. I contemplate all these things every month as I watch these young people impact the world. Their race is affecting my own heart. Watching it through my computer screen is stirring me, and that is a good thing.