Friday, February 15, 2013

Monitoring the Heart...

These are not just random numbers.  These are the number of beats of  my heart at different times of the day.  I am a little bit of a running geek, I will fully admit, and I have a heart monitor that I can strap around my chest, tuck under my sports bra-and it syncs with my watch-and VIOLA my heart beat shows up on my watch.  A little heart on the screen beats from a small to large heart at every thump of this important muscle. 52-the beats when I am sitting on the couch ding nothing but moving my finger over my ipad.  71...walking around the house-doing a variety of things from laundry, homework with the boys to making dinner. out time! 

For a little experiment last week, I wore my heart monitor for the majority of the day.  I figure it's the week of Valentines why not check out what my little beater is doing and what causes it to beat faster and what calms it down.  Well...sitting at my desk with little activity-was only about 60-65 beats/min.  However, all it took was for someone to come into my office with a challenge or get an email that frustrated me and BOOM that heart rate jumped!  At times it jumped a full 10 beats/min within seconds!  Apart from the everyday of life-there are other things that really get my heart going-some good some bad.  

 My awesome little heart monitor at work!  58 beats/min at 3:55 pm on a Friday afternoon...

The good things would be like-seeing my boys after I have been up country, the excitement of seeing family after a long year in the field, the pride I feel for my friends and staff as the accomplish great things for God...The bad-could be anything from a taxi cutting me off or someone yelling inappropriate things to me as I run. And then there are world issues... for example Gender Based Violence-or GBV.  I can almost say that this issue almost drives me to the point of wanting to seek violent revenge on those who have hurt, beat, scarred young girls and women.  Don't worry I don't seek that revenge -I don't believe that violence should be answered with more violence.  But it gets my heart rate going-like really going-as in I am about to explode!  Although there are so many abuses against women in this world-yesterday (Valentine's Day) I was able to get my heart rate going in a good way to raise awareness for GBV.

Another organization organized a Valentines 5k run for GBV programs and awareness.  Yes, it was a great day and a great cause and I love running-but you know what made it even better?  I got to do it with my sons.  I got to run with my family and friends who all live in Liberia and see and hear women who are victims of GBV. We have a GBV program this year-along with our other Child Protection programs-led by Danielle and her great staff.

The 'unofficial' mascot of the run!

 I have stated many times on this blog that I run with a purpose-and one of those is to be an example to my two boys, Isaac and Felix.  Yesterday I was reminded that they are growing up so fast and as I ran with Isaac (who led for part of the race and turns 10 today!), I realized that they are not going to be around much longer!  When I saw Kendell and Felix cross the finish line I was thankful that my boys have a father who teaches them how to respect and treat women how God intended them to. To be men who seek after God-and learn about His love so that they may learn what real love is-whenever they are in a relationship with a girl (eek!).  That my boys are surrounded by 'aunties' and 'uncles' that are great examples-of respect and love for each other.
 Everyone after the race-well done!

I saw many of our staff, and was so thankful that we at SP take this issue seriously-that we have put resources towards helping those women that don't have a voice, that have suffered for years at the hand of a violent relationship, for those women and girls that have been raped and for the many women who have paid the ultimate price, their life.
 Alisa finishing strong-the first woman to finish!
 Next was Joni!  

 One of my new favorite pictures...Isaac did so well!

The Word talks a lot about protecting your heart-for many reasons. It talks about how much God cares about our heart and what we let in and out of it.  God wants our heart rate to rise and be active for change when we think about things that break His heart.  Gender based violence breaks God's heart-I am pretty sure of it-it's not what He originally planned for men and women. 

Tired but happy!

Running+great people+great cause= the above happy smiles! :)

If you have sons like I do, teach your sons the importance of respecting women-there is never a good reason to hit a woman. Never. If you have daughters-pray for them-that God would protect their hearts from those who would want to hurt them. What gets your heart rate going?  Hopefully it is running and great causes that you can be a part of!

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