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  • Last evening, it was my deep honor and even sacred privilege, to do dinner with three truly remarkable men. All of them are from Uganda. All, with grit, determination, deep soulish focus, have survived what would take out most humans...most likely like each one of us. I'm sitting here in the early morning of a snowy beginning to this day in Colorado, still stunned by all I heard and witnessed from these signifiant, developing leaders, who will be changing our world, their worlds, in the days to come.

    All of them, as children, had an inner drive to literally walk between 6 and 10 miles to school...one way...every day. As children, they were doing "what we had to do to feed our families, and our minds and hearts." Whew. The inner drive to learn, a curiosity that they could not explain, would not allow them to just sit and wilt away.

    Often hungry, with only one meager meal in a day...or maybe in two or three days...they kept walking on. That physical hunger seemed to fuel an inner hunger for more, "out there" in the next village...somewhere.

    So they walked, and walked, and walked, to find that which would sustain who was left in their families...physically, emotionally, relationally, spiritually. This as children...not just the good 20 and 30something men they are today.

    For the two on the right, absent fathers, left them with few models, especially with siblings dying and/or in prison. Then, for all three of them...someone dared to be there in their lives to notice those sparks of curiosity, the determination to thrive and not just survive, the persistence, the courage, against all odds to walk into and beyond the horizons of their lives...literally.

    As this day begins, I am, one more time, deeply humbled at the privilege that has come my way to mentor such men across the globe. Their hunger to continue to learn and grow and make a difference fuels my own days.

    The leader next to me (I'm the olde one...lol) is desiring to create significant programs in Africa to develop leaders. The young man across from me has a heart for orphanages, beginning with abandoned babies. The new friend on the far right, who has overcome physical odds that are a story in themselves, wants to help kids caught in his own circumstances be educated to the freedom that all of them are living into today.

    They are not just committed to Uganda. They are committed to the whole of Africa. Lofty aspirations? Of course. Impossible? Not for them...especially with the odds they've already lived into and through.

    What a honor to encourage them on the journey as they engage the 8 dimensions of their own lives. Anyone interested in helping them?

    Then, as I looked at the pics taken last evening at a Ted's Montana Grill here in Colorado, I had to snicker a bit at what was written on the wall of our booth. There was a certain irony to that being above our two hour conversation:

    Some people grin and bear it.
    Other people smile and change it.

    There's evidence in that pic that that is a true statement. They even shared with me that the cost of each individual meal we ate would feed a family in their country for a month.

    Hmmmmmmm.......to think about and ponder. What might you and I be able to do from here? I'll ponder that while shoveling snow. May you have a blessed and smile-filled day as you accomplish what you are to change for the good this day.
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