The summer Olympic Games begin today in London, England! As you watch the opening ceremonies, look for Lopez Lomong, who’s hoping to bring home the gold medal in the men’s 5,000 meters race. Long before Lopez was a member of Team USA, he was a six-year-old boy snatched from his mother’s arms (during a Sunday church service!) by Sudanese rebel soldiers. Running for My Life is his story.
“In my village, everyone walked wherever we needed to go. Everyone but me. I did not walk. I ran. My parents named me Lopepe, which in our language means “fast.” As a little boy, I lived up to my name. I never did anything slow. When my mother sent me to get water, I raced down to the river with my five-liter tin can and ran back as fast as I could. When she needed salt, I ran to the neighbors’ to borrow some and raced back so fast that it was almost as though she had the salt right there in our hut. Even though I ran everywhere, I always imagined traveling in a car or truck would be even better. But sitting in the stifling heat in the back of the army truck, I dreamed of running back to my village and into my mother’s arms.” From Running for My Life
This is not a story about Africa or athletics. It is about outrunning the devil and achieving the impossible; faith, diligence, and the desire to give back. It is the American dream come true and a stark reminder that saving one can help to save thousands more.
“This true story of a Sudanese child refugee who became an Olympic star is powerful proof that God gives hope to the hopeless and shines a light in the darkest places. Don’t be surprised if after reading this incredible tale, you find yourself mysteriously drawn to run alongside him.” ―RICHARD STEARNS, president, World Vision US and author of The Hole in Our Gospel