Sunday, February 20, 2011

Running for a Good Cause

Normally, I wouldn't blatantly ask for a birthday gift, but this year is a little different. I had a chance to visit Youth Haven in Picacho, Arizona this past summer. It was amazing. This ministry gives kids a 100% free week of summer camp, then a weekend during the school year, and a Christmas experience, too.

About 50 percent of the children are in foster care. Many don't have running water at home, so they take long, hot showers at Youth Haven and think it's wonderful. Many of them have never been to church or heard about Jesus, and they fall in love with Him by the end of the week.

So, since I'm running a marathon on my birthday this coming Sunday, February 27, I wanted it to count for something, to support a good cause. Please consider helping me help Youth Haven and celebrate my birthday at the same time. These kinds of gifts are tax-deductible! For more information, please click on the link below.

Tucson Shootings

As a sheltered and over-protected only child, I chose a career in journalism because I thought it would be a one-way trip to adventure.

And in many ways, it has been. I've met people and seen places and ridden cars, hot air balloons and vintage planes and wagons. In many more ways, I've had a front-row seat to tragedy... and then had to meet a deadline to describe it.

The shootings on January 8 in Tucson hit close to home. The radio network at which I've been working sits 500 yards from the Safeway grocery store where "Congress on Your Corner" was being held that morning. Not only that, but twice in my career, I have been an aide to lawmakers. It feels different when you realize you could have been shot at, rather than just observe and journal the aftermath. That's a selfish thought. Here's a more altruistic one: we are supposed to be one of the most advanced societies ever... when are we going to get it right, whether "it" is mental illness, gun laws, safety... when are we doing to be enlightened enough so that we don't kill each other?

As a Christ follower, I can tell you the answer is only when we get to Heaven.

If you were listening to our faith-based radio network, you heard it again and again, "We live in a fallen world."

The good news, even for a fallen world, is that some people will search for the silver linings of this incident and find them. They are there: heroes who saved lives, heroes who sacrificed their lives to save others, a woman shot in the head at close range survives and walks and talks!

The better news, especially for a fallen world, is that Jesus offers eternal life, no matter how violently you die. People argue about how you take Him up on that offer, so read His message and decide for yourself. It starts with believing He is the son of God.

When you take that step, you're in for one-way adventure of a lifetime.