It's about being moved beyond mere compassion to action.
About a year ago, when I was visiting at Ellerslie Leadership Training in Colorado, I saw the International children's choir, His Little Feet, perform.
Here's a little about His Little Feet:
His Little Feet’s Children’s Choir travels the United States, being the voice for orphaned and vulnerable children worldwide. The purpose of the tour is to bring the awareness to the millions of children around the world in need of care, as well as facilitate opportunities for Americans to respond to the needs of children through giving, sponsoring, going and adopting.
I strongly recommend looking more into this amazing choir.
After their performance, everyone in attendance was encouraged to consider sponsoring a child through Compassion International. God had already been stirring the desire within me to sponsor a child, but seeing those precious children perform confirmed that for me.
I put it off for nearly a year because I really wanted to sponsor a child that was born on March 16th, 2010 (my Lily's actual birthday), but couldn't find a child born on that date through Compassion. I found children with that birthday through other sponsorship programs, but only wanted to support a Christ-centered ministry. And Compassion is "releasing children from poverty in Jesus' name," which is the most important thing of all. These children need practical support, yes, but even more than that, they need spiritual truth. They need Jesus...just as we all do.
I also didn't feel like I was financially able to give at that point. Then, a couple months ago, I received an email from my friend, Mary, who was sharing about her Compassion child and was encouraging others to sponsor (if you are reading this, Mary, thank you for your obedience to the Lord and for being the encouragement I needed to step out and do this).
God spoke clearly to my heart that it was time to sponsor. I think sometimes we wait until things are convenient or comfortable for us before we act. There is such blessing when we give gifts in sacrifice! And we can trust that if God is calling us to be His hands and feet, He will provide us with the resources we need!
I know that I so often feel like I am lacking in what I can actually do for the Lord. But He is teaching me this...we are never to feel like we are just one life and cannot make a difference. It is up to God to decide how, when, and where He uses us. We are only called to be obedient to Him! It is not about us feeling good with what we're doing or feeling like we are making a big difference.
Even if we only ever affect one person in this world, that is enough. Even if we only ever reach one person with the love of Christ, it is worth all the sacrifice of pouring yourself out for the glory of Jesus.
It must start with seeing each individual life the way God does. He doesn't see the massive number of children who are in poverty, but each individual life. And God loves these little ones through us! We are His hands and feet on this earth and we are called to serve them and lay down our lives for them. He wants to give us His heart and the ability to care for and love them as He does.
I looked on the Compassion website, searched again for a child born on March 16th, and decided to sponsor a sweet little girl born on March 16th, 2009 (exactly one year older than my Lily girl). There is no point in waiting for a child born on her exact birthday when I can change a child's life now!
When I first saw her face, tears came to my eyes, and my heart swelled with love for her. Thank you, Jesus, for letting me see her through your eyes.
Meet my sponsorship child - Laura from Colombia:
|Isn't she precious? :)|
This means so much to me to not only sponsor a sweet child in the name of Jesus and to know that I can make a difference in her life, but also to do something in honor and memory of Lily. God sees each of these boys and girls the way I see Lily, which totally puts things into perspective for me. And He sees them the way you see your children. Having a mother heart makes me grasp a little more the heart of God towards His children. I am so excited to send Laura gifts on March 16th (and Christmas and other times during the year). I truly believe this will be very healing and special for me...to love a little girl on earth because of my little girl in Heaven. Because I can't love my daughter of Heaven on earth.
I got this email from Compassion shortly after first sponsoring Laura:
I want to share a moment with you that recently occurred in Laura's life. We had the joy of personally telling her that “someone has chosen to become your sponsor.” That’s when Laura learned your name and that you believe she is very special.
For children who live in poverty, learning that their sponsor knows their name, knows their story, and cares for them is incredibly powerful. Children in need often feel that they have no value. But your love, through Christ, sends a message of hope.
I will be receiving letters from Laura and can send her letters...I love it!
I want to encourage you today to look into sponsoring one of these precious kiddos through Compassion International. Please don't wait until it's convenient for you. God wants to use each of us now, where we are...don't wait until you feel you can accomplish something "big" for the Kingdom of Heaven. Be obedient in the little things! This one thing (a small sacrifice) can forever impact a child's life! You might think that you will be blessing this child, but trust me when I tell you, they will bless you just as much, if not more! That's how God works. :)
Please take the time to watch this video and allow God to stir your heart to action!
I also want to mention that my article that was published this week on Live Action News, LifeSiteNews and LifeNews is also featured today on Embrace Grace!! I LOVE this blog and am so honored! :)