Lopez Lomong: Praying for Golden Opportunities

If you pray for God to use you in whatever way He desires, and you act on the opportunities He presents, you may see results beyond your imagination.

My friend Lopez Lomong was born in South Sudan in the midst of war. At the age of 6, he was kidnapped from his home and held captive in a prison camp. To escape, Lopez ran. And ran. He spent days running for his life, eventually making it to the relative safety of a United Nations refugee camp. Several years later, Lopez immigrated to the United States, where he began running for competition, instead of survival.

This Wednesday, running for the USA, Lopez will attempt to qualify for the Olympic 5000 meter final. If he makes it, he’ll run for Gold on Saturday night. But for Lopez, running is about much more than winning medals. Running is a God-given opportunity to help lift up the people of his home country.

Together with World Vision, Lopez launched 4 South Sudan, to help provide clean water, health care, education, and nutrition to the South Sudanese.

As Lopez recently explained to Christianity Today, "running is the talent that God has given to me. In the Bible when you are given a talent, you can put it in your pocket and not use it, or you can use it. I am trying to use mine."

When I first met Lopez at a speaking event about a year and a half ago, I knew right away that God was using him to do big things. After getting to know him a little better, I realized that I God was giving me a small opportunity to help.

It’s been a joy to be able to support Lopez’ vision for bringing hope to his homeland. I cannot wait to see where his journey takes him, and I trust that God is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20).

I’ll be cheering wildly on Wednesday (and Saturday!), and I hope you will too.