So, the blog has been sitting here unused since an enthusiastic outburst at the New Year. Oh well. Am reflecting at the moment on the need for more compassion in the world, as I prepare for Compassion Sunday at church this week. This is basically a big promotion for Compassion Australia, which attempts to gain many more sponsors for children across the globe – in fact to reach the 100,000 mark of those Australians sponsoring children in 26 developing countries! Globally there are 1.3 million sponsor children through Compassion International…..yet this hardly seems enough. We have so much unnecessary stuff in our homes and lives, unused resources which could and should be more evenly distributed around the globe. If they were my children dying of preventable disease wouldn’t I lift a finger to help? If they were drinking dirty water or going without food, wouldn’t I be quick to do something? We need to put faces on the statistics of children (and people generally) living in poverty, and not just consume and spend more because everyone around us is doing it!
The definition of compassion is “a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.” And Jesus said “. . . whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me.” Matthew 18:5. When we sign up to sponsor a child we are welcoming them into our lives, to share with us our resources, our family and our faith in the One true God. We are welcoming more of Christ into our lives!
So, I had been thinking as I prepare for Compassion Sunday: Do I really need to work so hard on this slideshow, on making it attractive and making things clear for potential sponsors. Why can’t they just see the need and sign up? (I think in frustration and with tired eyes and the beginnings of a head cold!). But with all the above in mind, yes they do need encouragement to sponsor a child – whatever might incite one more person to sign up for a sponsor child is worth it! Isn’t it?! How awesome that a little bit of our income can make a really big difference in the life of a child, a family, a community! We may not ever know the full extent of the impact child sponsorship has, but God knows, and it is He who works through Christians and local churches in these countries to bring the gospel to the hearts of these children.
We have had the privilege of sponsoring two Compassion children (since about 1996): a boy Santiago in Ecuador, and then our current sponsor child, a girl named Stacy, in El Salvador. Blessings to you both!