Last night, right before bedtime, I received a text message informing me that someone had made a donation that provided clean water for 5 children (AMAZING!) The gift was from a family who has given every single year I’ve been with Team World Vision, starting back in 2010 when I ran my first half marathon.
I sent them a text right away to say thank you. I said, “You’ve been with me since day 1.”
He replied, “It’s our pleasure. Pretty crazy where God has taken you on this journey. Grateful to be a part of it.”
It got me to thinking how thankful I am for those people who were with me in the beginning. For the people who gave; whether their gifts were large or small, these were the people who, without their encouragement and support, I might not be here today, and I would’ve missed all that God has done.
Friends who have given at any point in the past – I need you to see and understand all that your gifts have done. So let’s take a look back…
- My first race ever – I mean EVER – was the Minneapolis Rock ‘n Roll 13.1 in August 2010. I wasn’t a runner when I started, and when I finished, I swore I’d never do it again. But today, I couldn’t tell you how many half marathons I’ve done. Too many to count.
- Every time I finished a half marathon, I would say “I will never double that distance. People who run marathons are nuts.” I have since completed 4 marathons, and twice, ran the Twin Cities Marathon course, not on the day of the race, just because.
- For the past 2 years, I’ve had the best birthdays of my life, running my age in miles, from Lakeview Hospital in Stillwater where I was born, to somewhere in Minneapolis, 37 and 38 miles west, respectively, surrounded by friends and family.
- Last fall, I had the hair-brained idea to run a 50K race. I finished, but it wasn’t pretty. Regardless, I have challenged my body in ways I never imagined possible, and I have achieved my goals.
- I swore I’d never attempt a triathlon. I just wasn’t interested. I wasn’t a swimmer and cycling terrifies me. Yet, here I am, taking on Ironman, because I’ve learned that with God, anything is possible. I know I can’t do it on my own, but I know I’m not alone. That gives me just enough confidence to step out of the boat and try.
- I was hired by World Vision in 2014, carrying a fire that I believe God gave me (in 2013) to grow the Twin Cities team to 500 runners.
- In my first two years on staff, God did exactly what he said he was going to do. In 2015, my first year, the team’s total impact grew by 212% over the year before. Last year, our impact increased again by 147%, and we became the first city outside of Chicago to raise over $1M.
- I’ve traveled around the country and around the world – 2 trips to Africa w/ 16 teammates to witness the work that is being done because of your generosity. One of those teammates was my husband, Dan.
- Our marriage has changed for the better because of this ministry. We’re both healthier – physically, mentally and emotionally. But beyond that, this ministry has given us a shared experience through the ups and downs of training, through pain and exhaustion. Having him with me in this is a priceless gift.
- Together, we’ve went from doubting that we could give $39 dollars a month to sponsor a child in need, to now sponsoring 7 children in 4 countries. We’ve met 3 of them in person… and one may be coming to visit us here in the US next year. Generosity begets generosity.
- The ways in which this ministry has personally blessed and changed me are innumerable. I won’t bore you with all of them, but they are real. I am not the same person I was 7 years ago. Not. At. All.
Best of all, and this has been the primary goal all along… because of the generosity, faithfulness, and compassion in your heart … because the Spirit of Jesus is alive and well, living through you, my friends and family, 1069 people have access to clean water. Over $53,000 raised since 2010.
Your gifts have had a ripple effect.
They’ve created a tidal wave of love, changing the lives of countless individuals, making the world a better place in every way imaginable.
I am in absolute awe, and so, so grateful.
I urge you, with all that I am, to continue in your generosity. You are making an incredible difference. As long as I know you’re with me, I will continue to run. Let’s see end an to the water crisis, together.
Thank you so very much.
To give towards my goal to bring clean water to 500 children this year alone, visit my website: www.teamworldvision.org/participant/sineadtris