I've heard many funny responses to runners and why we do what we do. Things like:
1. "If you find my body on a running trail, know that I was murdered and dumped there."
2. If you see me running, it's because someone is chasing me."
3. "Were you dropped on your head as a baby?"
4. "Do you run so you can eat dessert?"
and on and on and on...... I smile outwardly and remain assured inwardly of my convictions.
Yesterday, during the local Crop Walk, I committed to run my six laps and had a friendly challenge with the Roman Catholic priest. We would run together and encourage our congregations to sponsor us on behalf of hungry people all around the world. During the walk, winds picked up and dark clouds rolled in. It rained intermittently from time to time. It wasn't stormy but was inconvenient for runners and walkers. Some folks scurried to shelter and others drifted away and went home. We were not real committed to endure hardship on behalf of those who endure hardship daily.
I don't profess to be a hardcore person who seeks uncomfortable situations but as I ran yesterday, I kept whispering the name of one woman in Kenya who was my inspiration. "Lobuin, Lobuin, Lobuin"
Lobuin is a woman who spoke out in a council meeting in her village. She spoke on behalf of women in her village who had to walk 7 miles round trip to get water for their family's cooking needs, their animals drinking water, and all while the men of the village would do little to help. After her impassioned plea, the men of the village conceded control of a local bore hole (water well) to be governed by the women of that same village. Because of their hard work, the women were rewarded with responsibility of managing this new water source.
As the rain showered down yesterday, I considered my temporary suffering insignificant compared to women like Lobuin those like her who have no water nearby. I don't know what it is like to have to walk 7 miles round trip to get water. I don't worry about where my next meal will come from. In fact, my life is pretty good all the way around.
It was an honor to run the 6 laps and to get wet on behalf of all the "Lobuins" of the world and I would do it every day if I had to. Why do I run? Many reasons exists, but yesterday was for Lobuin.