iron mike

day to day
lost in the mundane,
which is really the wild.
sometimes it takes unusual inspiration
to shake me out of the day to day.
inspiration from another’s sacrifice,
inspiration from america:
iron mike.

I hurriedly wrote the above after a staff meeting earlier this week. Mike is an average 55 year old man from Elizabethtown. He became ‘Iron Mike’ when he biked from coast to coast to raise funds for Blood:Water Mission. He found something worth fighting for, bought a bike a couple weeks before the ride began, joined the team, and rode his bike for the better part of 9 weeks telling people at gas stations, parks, churches and concerts about the men, women, and children who needed clean water in Africa. Iron Mike and his team raised a fairly impressive sum of money and impacted thousands. Beyond that, they were and continue to be inspiring. Iron Mike stopped in our office earlier this week and he encouraged our staff to continue our work and to work towards excellence.

I love what I do, and I love Africa. America is comfortable, but I let my guard down in Africa. The stories of hurt and happiness, of pain and perseverance, and of trials and triumphs of Africans are my day to day. In America it is in the pictures, proposals, and reports that I read daily, and in Africa it is all around me. It is wild and lovely, but is my day to day. In America I am surrounded by shiny windows, smooth roads, fast food, and blinking lights; consumerism. It is a constant sensory overload and yet it is uninspiring. And that is why I found Iron Mike so refreshing and incredibly inspiring. I am grateful to be in a place where I have the privilege to regularly be inspired and blessed by the Iron Mike’s of America.

One Reply to “iron mike”

  1. Inspiration is simply breathing in. To inspire. To breathe in.

    I’m paraphrasing Maxine Hong Kingston, as she talked with me about the balance of writing and meditation, and how meditation affects her writing.

    The writing comes out of the silence, the breathing in. So does the “day-to-day” living and enjoyment of it, no?

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