Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Sunday Recap... (Kickball Edition)

I was not at "church" on Sunday. I was playing kickball. As my Catalyst peeps were worshiping at 9:30 and 11:00, I was on the field playing a kid's game.

This was not your regular kickball game. I was participating in a Guinness World Record Kickball Game. We started playing on Friday at noon and stopped on Sunday at 2:00 p.m. We played for 50 hours. There were 20 people on each team and we basically played two hours and rested two hours. At night we would play for four hours and sleep for four hours. So each of us played 25 of the 50 hours.

The best part of this game is that we played for kids who don't get to play games like kickball. We played for Mercy Project, a local non-profit, that is changing the lives of kids who have been robbed of their childhood. In Ghana, Africa there are 7000 young kids (6-10 yrs old) that work 17 hours a day, seven days a week. They have been sold into slavery by their parents who cannot afford to feed them. They bale water out of leaking boats, fix fishing nets, pull the nets from the lake and are treated like machines. It is horrible and that is why we kicked that red ball all over the field for 50 hours.

It is difficult to put the weekend into words, but beyond the aching muscles and exhaustion, it changed me. I waited a couple of days to put my words in blog form for fear that emotion and exhaustion would get the best of me. I did not want to write something and look back and realize I had exaggerated or too much Advil had affected my judgement.

My friend, Chris Field, is the founder of Mercy Project and he shared from his heart at the end of the game. He shared with us that being a people who love mercy is different than performing occasional acts of mercy. It is what we spend our lives, money, and energy doing. In that moment God began to speak very clearly to me. He was telling me that loving mercy comes with a cost. It is not easy. It is more than writing a check. It is something we must give ourselves to. To be a person that loves mercy will cost me something.

Before this weekend you could have asked me if one person can make a difference in the world and I would have told you yes. Truthfully, I did not believe that person could be me. Weird, huh? That changed this weekend. I was inspired beyond words by what my neighbor, Chris (26), pulled off. Besides setting a new world record (which we did), he inspired 39 of us to take time off work and raise money to put ourselves through a muscular hell. When all was said and done we raised $19,000 to build a house, a home where these kids can live when they are rescued from slavery. This weekend we made the world a better place and I got to play a part in it.

I know that God has spoken and that my next step is to go to Ghana this summer. I need to see these kids. I need to hold their hands. I need to hear and see their stories lived out in front of me. I know that this journey will become part of my story and enable me to make a bigger difference in the months and years ahead.

I sincerely believe I can make a difference in the world, something real, something tangible. In some ways this weekend was a "new beginning" or an "awakening" for me. I am excited about the journey ahead. I also believe that playing kickball and church were one in the same for me this weekend.

I am incredibly grateful that God is still speaking... through a game of kickball? Yep!

1 comment:

April said...

Wow. Good for you.