Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A Dream So Big

A Dream So Big is the story of how one person with a dream can make an enormous difference. Steve Peifer was living the life many call "The American Dream": great job, nice house, 2 sons, and he and his wife, Nancy, were thrilled to be expecting their third child. The joy soon turned to heartbreak when they learned their son would not live long due to a chromosomal disorder. They treasured the 8 days their son lived, but the loss left an empty spot in their lives. Nancy had always wanted to be a missionary in Africa, so when an offer to be dorm parents at a school for missionary kids for one year in Kenya was presented, the Peifer family saw a chance for Nancy to experience her dream, plus an outlet work though their grief by pouring their lives into other people. 

 In this book, Steve tells a story that happened not long after their arrival in Africa. When visiting a local school, he asked why the children were allowed to lie on the floor rather than sit at desks to do their schoolwork. When the teacher explained that most were too faint from hunger to sit, Steve knew that something had to be done to help. Knowing that the key to escaping poverty is education (Kenya had a very high drop-out rate), he went on to devise a plan that gave the kids the nutrition they needed and an incentive to stay in school. His effort not only impacted the lives of the people of Kenya, but those who were given to opportunity to be a part of the funding. 

Book Review: I love this book!! Not only is this a story that is  inspirational for what has been done and continues to be done through the efforts spearheaded by Steve...but it was a lot of fun to read. Of course, I cried during parts of it, but I also laughed at loud during much of it too. The personality of Steve shines through and you are drawn into his world. The co-author, Gregg Lewis, skillfully crafted an absorbing tale and presented it in a manner that was spell-binding. Each time I laid the book down, it stayed on my mind, and I was eager to return to it. I frequently read uplifting stories and appeals for help, but this has become interwoven into my thoughts and prayers on a daily basis. Steve may have started out as a reluctant missionary, but his willingness to adapt his desires to obeying God led to international recognition for his food and computer program, Kenya Kids Can!. Also, the Peifer family's 1 year mission project has extended to more than a dozen years in Kenya. Definite proof that when you submit your will to God, your desires of the heart may be molded into something unexpected.

Steve Peifer serves as Director of College Guidance for Rift Valley Academy in Kijabe, Kenya. He established a rural food program in 2002 that provides lunches for 20,000 Kenyan schoolchildren a day. He has also built the first solar-powered computer-training center in Kenya, and is now developing twenty computer classroom labs for rural schools. For his work on behalf of Kenyan children, he was awarded the CNN Heroes Award for Championing Children in 2007, the 2007  Yale Counseling Award and the 2010 NACAC Excellence in Education Award. Steve and Nancy have four children.

Steve Peifer on Facebook
Steve Peifer on Twitter
Africa Inland Mission International
Rift Valley Academy
Building Computer Labs in Kenya

I received a copy of this book for free in hopes I would review it on my blog. No promises were made of a positive review and all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Steve Peifer will be stateside to promote his book March 21- April 13, 2013. For more information or to schedule an interview, contact Katie Broaddus at Katie@katiebroaddus.com.


No comments: