A Little White Flower
I am no Martin Luther King, but I have a dream. As a little girl, I loved clomping around the house in my Daddy's shoes. What fun this is for a child to do, but as an adult, the thought of walking in the shoes of someone much admired can leave one thinking, "How could I ever do that?!"
However, dreams and the human heart are amazing and unique. They can both grow without limit. To set a goal so big, you have to grow into the person who can achieve it is such a fantastic concept. Intense prayer, unyielding perseverance, consistent growth and development as a person, and continually living outside one's comfort zone can help move one closer to that desired destination.
While I was visiting Kinshasa, DRC, a dream was born out of seeming adversity . . . a dream to impact the lives of children who have no one to help them dream . . . a vision to help children who don't know where their next meal is coming from yet whose very existence drives them to find the food they need to survive wherever they can find it. This wasn't a TV image of human suffering. This was something I was personally experiencing it for myself - children with bellies distended from malnourishment, foraging on the sides of the road for food. As I look back, I wished I had taken a photo of this scene to share with my family and friends back home. Somehow though, I felt the need to give these children the dignity of privacy, but that image was burned into my heart, burned in my mind.
Could There Be A School?
My travels in The Congo also included many other scenes. On one particular day, in a most unusual place, one of these scenes resulted in the birth of a dream. While walking with friends, I saw a small piece of dry, barren land off in the distance. I asked, "If I wanted to, could I build a school there on that piece of land?" The answer then was, "Oh, yes!" At that moment, the idea of starting as school there was born in my heart. In my mind, I saw state of the art, international quality Kindergarten for children who could never afford it but who would benefit so much from it. How would this be done?
A Little White Flower
Years later, I saw an astonishing photo of a flower that had bloomed in a most unusual setting. Not in a flower bed, not in a garden, or a field or a meadow. It blossomed in the crack of a New York City concrete sidewalk in the middle of summer. What power lay in the tiny seed that produced this beautiful, delicate flower! Within that seed was all the energy and nutrient it needed to begin life as a flower.
Imagine those tiny roots reaching, reaching, reaching down to a level where some water had to have been. Imagine this little sprout stretching, stretching, stretching up toward the source of light that sent its rays to encourage this tiny flower to emerge from its coffin-like dwelling. Imagine this lovely white flower as it began to blossom and open its gentle petals for all to see and admire. Surely this sprout must have radiantly and victoriously lifted its head to the sky and said to the world, "I made it!" I will remember this courageous little summer sidewalk flower whenever the way before me seems impossible to negotiate. The sway is not clear how to build an international-like Kindergarten for those who cannot afford it, but the seed idea is there.
A small business counselor once asked me about a business venture I wanted to pursue. My response was, "All I have is a dream." to which he replied, "That is all that you need." Just like that little, white flower, everything we need to push through and blossom in life is right inside the seeds of our dreams. Just like that little white flower, the tiny roots of my vision for this school are reaching and stretching toward the sources of light and water it needs to emerge from its coffin-like dwelling. And just like that little, white flower, this school will begin to blossom and open its doors for all to see and admire. Surely this state of the art, international quality Kindergarten will one day radiantly and victoriously open its doors and say to the world, "We made it!"