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Monday, March 31, 2014

The Difference Makers

Not long ago I first heard the song, Difference Maker, by one of my very favorite bands.  After listening to it countless times, I think I've determined that the songwriter is being a bit sarcastic.  There are many who love to shout their achievements at the top of their lungs, who claim to be the "friendliest of friends of God", who take more credit for their talents and their influence than perhaps they should.

I believe that God gives people their gifts.  That God chooses people to put into certain situations and that God works to help us help each other.  And there are those that do that work humbly and graciously, never asking for accolades or seeking the spotlight.  I have been privileged in recent months to meet some of God's most humble servants. That's why when I hear this song I think of some of the truest examples of difference makers that I have ever met:  the nurses and staff members at the Pediatric Cancer clinic in Northern Virginia. They would, I am sure, be reluctant to proclaim themselves "Difference Makers", but that is what they are.  I am certain that all of them wake up each day just going about the work of doing the best that they can.  But I am also certain that God has put them where they are to make a difference in the world, even if that difference is in the very small world and sometimes all too brief life of a child.

Back in December I wrote a post about my visit to Children's National Medical Center and how impressed I was with all the doctors, scientists, researchers and generally giant-brained folks with whom I was able to spend the day.  As a mother, I know that if my child had cancer I would be clinging to these people, relying on them to be the ones to keep my child in the here and now.  These individuals are remarkable.  They are relentless.  They are oh-so-smart.

When we talk about raising money for Childhood Cancer, make no mistake.  We want answers.  We want treatments.  We want a cure.  And 80% of funds we raise will go to that effort.  This cure, this future of eradicating this horrible disease?  This is where we want to be someday.

But there is the reality of where we are.  When I walk into the clinic or the hospital I am not only among sick children.  I am among princesses and fairies.  I am among athletes and superheroes.  I am among children who want to play and hope and dream.  And I am among amazing people who are tasked with making all of those dreams a reality - not tomorrow, not next year, but right now in the midst of a childhood so rudely interrupted.

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