My husband and I sponsor two precious children through Compassion International. One is Brenda Michele, who lives in El Salvador and is 8 years old. The other is Abenezer, who is 6 years old and lives in Ethiopia. Both children live in extreme poverty--poverty that is simply not seen here in the United States. In Brenda's neighborhood, most of the houses are made from thin steel and corrugated cardboard, with dirt floors. They are so incredibly hot during the day that no one can go inside. Her parents travel on foot several miles each way to go to the nearest town in an attempt to earn a dollar to feed their family of 6. If Brenda and her siblings didn't have a sponsor, things would be dismal for them, with little hope. She now gets food and medical care, schooling and spiritual guidance on a regular basis and is thriving.
Abenezer has been "part" of our family for just a few months. We now have a boy! ;) He, like Brenda, is absolutely adorable. They both have creamy brown faces and huge eyes and precious, precious smiles. Abenezer's looks as though he's just about to impart wisdom--his face seems wiser than a 6 year old's should be, but he's only as big as my kids were when they were 3. Although Abenezer's family has access to clean water (thank God), many in his city have no access to adequate toilet facilities. The lack of sanitary conditions in his village poses a very real health hazard, especially for children.
If you've flushed a toilet in the last week, you are wealthier than most of the world. Is it time for you do act on that?
When my 18-year old realized the joy that comes with sponsoring a child in a developing country, she responded to God's calling on her heart by sponsoring a child of her own--actually, TWO! She sponsors Hirut, a beautiful 16-year old girl in Ethiopia, and Desmond, an adorable 9-year old boy living in Ghana. (She also makes monthly donations to an organization called "Food for the Poor", which takes food surpluses from first world countries and flies them to folks in true need. Visit www.foodforthepoor.org for more information.)
If you're not currently sponsoring a child in a third world country, please take a moment and consider whether you are able: If you can "afford" $38.00 per month, you can do this! We are a single-income family with no money tree in our backyard ~ but we can share what we have with those in real need. You may be surprised by what you can "do without", in order to provide some basic food and medical care to a child in desperate poverty.
If you have a child you are sponsoring--through Compassion International or another agency--name them here and tell me about them!
If you are not sponsoring a child, ask yourself this question: Is God calling you to a relationship with a child you don't even know yet? Let this be the last thing you think about tonight before you go to sleep. I'd like to hear what you decide in the morning :)
Click on this site to see some faces that may help you make your decision:
Singing for Jesus at Easter
"...for I was hungry, and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me." Jesus, in Matthew 25:35, 36 (NKJV)
..."Assuredly, I will say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these, My brethren, you did it to Me." Jesus, in Matthew 25:40 (NKJV), emphasis mine.