This is my first day as a Compassion Blogger for the month of September. I feel a bit nervous, but excited to be given this opportunity to blog on behalf of children around the world who need the help of the many so badly.
This is not the many helping the few. This is the many helping the even more-many.
That might not be a word you learned in your elementary school English class, but I think it fits. Do we realize, and I mean more than in a statistical sense, just how many malnourished and hungry and sick children there are in the world? Do we look around at all that we have and think that we acquired these things through our own deeds and successes? For myself, I strive to realize every day that the things I have are actually blessings from God and to Him be the glory of it all!
Now that is a wonderful thing to say, isn't it?
"I dedicate all I have to the Lord."
But, oh, how I yearn to live that every day of my life.
Too many times I get that candy bar when I make a trip to Walgreens for medicine. I might add a soda for the next day because, my goodness, I always seem to be sleep-deprived. Too often I walk into my beautiful house and scan the clean, wooden floor and tisk myself over the few scuffs. Too often I listen to the sound of running water without realizing how fortunate I am to have it. A washer and dryer - HE-detergent, no less. 4 bedrooms in the house. All of my children have their own room and we have a packed fridge.
Too often I skim past my blessings. I want to put my foot down and even bend knee and thank God above for all He gives.
When I went to Honduras, I truly knew the word need in a whole new light. But, surprisingly, these needy people were, for the most part, more joyful and happy than I had ever known. They knew the Lord in a way I had never imagined. They had to lean on Him for everything. Lacking adequate shelter, medicine, food, safe drinking water, they knew who their God was and they grew strong by their faith.
I felt like the person in need.
When I wrote about our call to serve, I was overwhelmed with the fact that we all need to open our eyes more. We need to open our selves more and not be afraid or intimidated by those in this world who are so sick or hungry that it hurts our hearts too much to look.
Don't look away.
Instead, look here.
Did you miss that link? Here it is, plainly:
Yes, you read right. It says Sponsor a Child.
Now let me be clear. Sponsoring a child will not solve the world's hunger and poverty problem.
But look at Jesus' life in serving and teaching: He gave some lectures and sermons to a huge group...but Jesus touched many lives on an individual basis. He knew that for them to know God personally, He would share and commune with them.
Taking the money I use to go out once a month or saving the money I'd normally spend on Walgreens candy bars or coffee drinks -- all that can add up.
And it doesn't just add up to the monthly fee of child sponsorship.
It adds up to a relationship, first through letters, with one child.
You write letters, send your love, across the world to that one child who will come to love you more than you thought possible.
Then it will turn into you touching that entire family.
Then, miraculously, because of the work of Compassion International, that impact will reach the entire community as Compassion workers integrate health and God and love.
And, quite possibly, you might be in the position to introduce that child, that family, that community to the wonder of knowing Jesus as their Christ.
The things we, as sponsors, do on our parts feels so small...
but, as one who visited her sponsor child this past May in Honduras, my part in Daniela's life has been huge.
She calls me Godmother.
Her family prays for my family on a daily basis.
They have all my pictures and letters - 8 years' worth.
Daniela tells me she has prayed for the day to meet me.
I walked into that village and saw how the school has improved through the loving guidance of that organization. I listened as her mother sobbed gratitude to me.
No more than $40 dollars a month for the past 8 years gave me that (it's different for each organization, but roughly between $25 and $35).
Writing letters and praying and sending my monthly support- all that changed a 4 year old's life - and now that she is newly 13 years old, I see how it has impacted her family's life, her community's life, and it baffles me.
I never thought my letters and monthly giving would sum up to be more love and graciousness that I could ever imagine.
Think about it.
In the linked blog post from November 11th of 2011, I wrote, in general, about the world's need and our responsibility to help. In that post I pointed out that not all are called to sponsor or go on missionary trips or the like. But God had laid on my heart the following:
"But God is God and we are human. Flawed humans who sometimes don't know what to do with all of our privileges, yet at the same time some of us don't know how to ask for help for what we need.
Let God be God and let us do what we need to do: take action."
Let God move and shake your heart. Let the realities of the world be shown to you and do not be afraid. God did not give us a spirit of fear. He calls us to action.
"For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."
I pray that you lay your heart and your will before the Lord and see what He has in store for you.
"In all I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself, said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive."
~ Acts 20:35 (ESV)
Maybe a child who speaks a different language, lives on the other side of the world, will call you Godparent.