Juan David, 22, is all smiles as he takes the podium to receive his second gold medal.
Winning isn’t new to Juan, a decorated athlete. He is the proud recipient of four Olympic medals: two gold, one silver, and one bronze.
Sure, he might not be the most decorated athlete of all time. His medal count doesn’t come close to that of Michael Phelps. And his 100-meter time doesn’t match that of Usain Bolt, the current Olympic record-holder from Jamaica.
But life isn’t just about the finish line.
One of the most tragic aspects of poverty is its cyclical nature. The struggle to survive becomes all-consuming, and as a result, long-term change is difficult to achieve. Families are often forced to make choices between immediate needs -- like food and medical care -- or investing in the future of their children through education.
Today's guest contributor is a child sponsor who told her inspiring story of faith as part of our "What Moves You" campaign -- a space where World Vision supporters share their reasons for joining our global efforts against poverty and injustice.
In order to protect her identity, we won't be sharing her name, but please read how her battle with infertility led her to a very special little boy named Samuel Isaac.
Poverty: It's a word everyone has heard. Much of the world understands it firsthand.
Maybe you've personally experienced physical poverty at some point, with its life-depleting side effects -- lack of nutritious food, clean water, safe shelter, medical care, or education.
Or maybe poverty is a reality that feels distant to you -- something you've heard of but never experienced for yourself.
There's one well-known John Lennon who wrote and performed a famous song about imagining. But another is a 15-year-old boy from the Philippines who imagines something of his own -- a better future and an opportunity to pursue his dream of becoming a teacher, thanks to his sponsorship through World Vision.
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My name is John Lennon, a World Vision sponsored child since second grade.
World Vision is at work within 400 different communities in almost 100 countries. That’s where your support becomes food for people who are hungry, clean water, education to give children a better future, and care for the sick.
What you see when you visit these places is love in action. You see the manifestation of the love that sponsors have for people they’ve never met. You see it among World Vision staff serving those whom society has brushed aside.
“Let my heart be broken with the things that break the heart of God.”
As a World Vision employee, I’ve grown quite familiar with the poignant prayer that our founder, Dr. Bob Pierce, scrawled in the margins of his Bible many years ago.
But on a busy afternoon last fall, as I sat at my desk in the World Vision U.S. headquarters, my heart was far from broken.
It was elated.
After 15 fruitful years, World Vision's work is coming to a close in the Amri Karbi region of India's Assam state.