On a Wednesday night last fall my life changed. I wasn’t planning on going to church that night. I had a really bad headache so I had decided to stay home. But then my friend, Mona, posted on Facebook that she was speaking during the service. She mentioned her topic for the evening and it was something that I was struggling with. So I took some pain medicine, got the girls ready, and we went to church.
Mona started the service by showing slides from her recent mission trip to Kakemega, Kenya. She had visited a school for kids with special needs that was called the Daisy School. As I watched each picture flash across the screen something happened to me. I started crying. That might not sound like a big deal. But it was. At the time I was battling the worst anxiety of my life. I couldn’t seem to feel anything anymore and I hadn’t been able to cry. Before anxiety invaded my life I cried very easily. But I couldn’t remember the last time that I’d cried. As I saw the pictures of the kids from the Daisy School the tears came like a flood.
I was overwhelmed with emotion. These kids don’t have much of anything. I began to realize how much my family has. Yes, two of our girls have special needs. And it can be really, really hard at times. But as I looked at these pictures I realized that I don’t even begin to know what hard is. I was suddenly faced with the realization that my husband and I can give our girls everything that they need. And one of the reasons we are able to do that may be just simply because we were born in the United States and we are able to raise our family here. But what if we were in Kenya? What if we couldn’t take care of our girls? That’s a kind of hard that my mind can’t even comprehend.
Mona moved on from the Daisy School presentation into the topic she was speaking on for the evening. I don’t remember what she talked about because I couldn’t stop thinking about the Daisy School. I went home and I couldn’t stop thinking about the Daisy School. I’ve never had a desire to go on a mission trip. And I still don’t have any desire to go on a mission trip. But as I sat in church on this night in 2016 God dropped a desire in my heart to help the Daisy School. I didn’t know how we were going to do it but I believed that God would show me.
At the end of April I still didn’t know what we were supposed to do to raise money for the Daisy School. Mona was planning her trip to Kenya and I asked her when she would be leaving. She said June 19th. June 19th! That’s less than 2 months away. We’re running out of time! I googled fundraiser ideas and nothing felt right. I began to panic because I only had the month of May left to do anything. And suddenly the answer came.
I woke up on April 26th at 3:00 in the morning with a thought. Use the bicycles your girls were blessed with to bless others. I believe it was God speaking to me. I had racked my brain for months trying to figure out what to do. But then in the still of the night the answer came.
Last spring a wonderful organization gave Mikayla and Hope adaptive bicycles. Our girls were 11 years old and I’d never seen them ride a bicycle. Along came these amazing people who gave them bikes free of charge. My dream to see my girls ride a bike was fulfilled. And it was because someone saw a need and did something about it. And now I saw a need in Kenya and I needed to do something about it.
On April 29th I posted on Facebook that Mikayla and Hope were having a fundraiser to bless the Daisy School. For a $5 donation the girls will ride their bikes for 15 minutes. We made a commitment that they would ride their bikes every day in May. The very next day at church 4 people gave me donations. I began to find checks in my mailbox. And I realized that God was doing something really special. And He had chosen my girls to be a part of something really big.
Mikayla has pedaled every single day in May. Hope missed 2 days because she came down with a stomach virus. I couldn’t be more proud of my girls. Hope was always exhausted after a day of school and a long bus ride home but she still rode her bike for at least 15 minutes. She even rode on the night that she had torn her pants and scraped her knee up at school. Most days Mikayla rode for 30 minutes and sometimes for as much as 45 minutes. We have 9 more days until the fundraiser is over. On June 1st I will announce how much money will be going to the Daisy School. I’m excited about what God has done and what He will do in this final week of our fundraising efforts.
I’m thankful for this opportunity to touch Kenya even though our family can’t physically go there. I’m thankful for people like Mona who have a heart to go to other nations and love others like Jesus loves. I’m thankful for everyone who has given me a donation and shared in this vision of helping the Daisy School. And I’m thankful that on that night in 2016 I didn’t let a headache stop me from going to church. God had a plan for our family and the Daisy School. I’m humbled to be a part of what He’s doing in Kenya. And I’m blessed to daily watch our girls pedaling to change the world.