My wife Liz and I love to run the Palm Springs Half Marathon. This year we decided to to do the Husband and Wife relay. My thinking was that based on previous years times if we trained hard, we just might win the division. I'm usually happy just racing the clock but like any competitive person I really wanted to win this, or at the very least finish top three.
The race started and Liz was off running the first leg of the half marathon. I jogged to the relay point where Liz would pass me the baton anxious to check out our competition. I struck up a conversation with one of our competitors Charlie from Canada. He was a two time Ironman finisher like me and his wife was a triathlete as well like my wife. Hmmm. This could be interesting. My wife Liz came in ahead of his wife and I was off and running. With numerous relay teams it was hard tell where we stood but I was sure we were at least second. In this race you meet back up with your spouse and run the final leg together and cross the finish line together. We crushed our goal time of 1:45:59 and ran a 1:41:35! For me it was a break thru run that included a 7:18 mile. Post race Liz and I were feeling great about our effort and we were sure we finished top three.
As we waited for the results we saw Charlie and his wife Maureen and walked over to ask them about their race. The conversation was easy because all of us had so much in common. I don't remember how it came up but I started talking about ministry in Mexico. I told them how much Liz and I love serving in Mexico and spending time with the kids at Siempre orphanage. Maureen was listening intently and asking me questions. I told them both that they should join us for a day in the colonia and Siempre. "I would love that!" said Maureen. Then she whispered to me "Charlie needs that". We exchanged information and it looks like Charlie and Maureen may take their first trip to experience what life is like in the colonia with us in March. And the race?
|The "colonia" Baja California|
Afterwards I was reflecting on the race and meeting Charlie and Maureen. Maybe God in his infinite wisdom placed me at the right place, with the right circumstances so that a couple from Canada could have the experience of serving and connecting with the poor in Mexico. Awesome.