#ItsAboutGiving

“It’s About Giving”

What does that mean?  Does it mean to give a little once a year at Christmas?  Does it mean to give all throughout the year?  Does it mean the gift of material items or doing specific acts?  What exactly does “it’s about giving” mean?

For me, “it’s about giving” reminds me to give where I can – whether it is donations to Goodwill, making a treat for a friend, helping Compassion more, or even giving my time to those who need it, I grew up believing that giving is what we are all supposed to do.  I always remind myself there are people who are worse off than me.  I don’t have a lot of money to pass out to everyone I see, but I do try to use my skills and talents to do what I can. 

Last week, a group of very dedicated people met online to have a twitter party about this topic with Compassion.  So many great ideas of what picture we get when thinking of giving during the holidays – the tastes, sounds, feelings, colors and associations we all had.  It was a great time sharing traditions amongst one another and hearing how everyone gives of themselves to others.

What was a gift you gave that was received with joy and deep appreciation. What effect did that have on you?

The gifts that I have seen to mean the most to individuals who receive them are gifts from the heart.  These are usually things homemade or ones that the giver puts a lot of thought into.  I love to be crafty and make gifts for people.  This holiday season, I am going to try for most of the gifts I give to be homemade.  When those that receive presents are filled with joy and appreciation, then in return the giver typically feels good about themselves as well.

Why do you give?  What is the root behind the desire to give?

I give because I know it is the right thing to do.  Giving makes those receiving in a brighter mood.  As I said before, I give by volunteering, helping friends through actions (helping carry goods, giving kind words, etc.), helping those in need, and also by the materialistic way of giving items.  My desire to give of myself came from my mother.  She instilled the power of giving in me.  One person can make a difference in someone’s life.  Wes Stafford discusses this idea in his book, “Just a Minute”.  The smallest things can change someone’s life forever – whether you realize the act or not.

What have you learned from our culture about giving?

In our culture, I have noticed a lot of selfish people in respect to the act of giving.  America is full of people who have more wants than needs.  There are some individuals who aren’t “wealthy”, but are still able to give of their time.  A lot of other cultures don’t have all the material items/wants that we have, but are still compassionate/helpful and able to give to one another.  I feel like those who don’t have a lot in their life tend to be more giving of themselves than those who are blessed with much material items.  Being less fortunate, you’re able to appreciate life and those around much more because you realize their worth in your life. 

What have you learned from the Bible about giving?

The Bible says a lot about giving.  The following are some of the verses I find to be inspiring and ones that we should all remember and live by.

Deuteronomy 16:17 Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the LORD your God which he has given you.

Proverbs 21:26 He covets greedily all the day long: but the righteous gives and spares not.

Proverbs 28:27 He that gives to the poor shall not lack: but he that hides his eyes shall have many a curse.

Luke 6:30 Give to every man that asks of you; and of him that takes away your goods ask them not again.

Acts 20:35 I have showed you all things, how that so laboring you ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.

 

#ItsAboutGiving

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Clara, Rhecel, and Amanuel

I received letters from Clara and Rhecel this week, plus an updated picture of Amanuel! It’s a good letter week. 🙂 

I don’t have Clara’s letter right next to me, but basically she told me she was learning about the creation of the Earth, her favorite verse is Genesis 1:1, and her favorite person in history is Jesus. She said she is praying for her mother’s health still, but she is getting better, which is awesome to hear! I am so thankful to hear this from Clara.

In Rhecel’s letter she told me more about school and church, music she’s involved in, sports she loves doing, and the support I give her. I love hearing from Rhecel because in her letters she tells me so much about herself. She and I have a pretty quick turn around of letters too (from the Phillipeans), which is always nice. Her letter was dated September 9 and I received it October 18.

I had to take a second look at Amanuel’s new photo because he has grown up so much! Sadly, I haven’t heard from him in quite a few months and am going to give it another month or two before I ask them about it. I assume he’s okay since they did send me a new picture and all…

I Pray for You

I made this for my kids. I hope they like it.

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Blessed…

My family lives in a home with mud walls and a roof of tin – we are blessed.
…I’m glad it keeps me safe.
We have rice and legumes for dinner – we are blessed.
…It fills me up each day.
I go to school and get help with my work – I am blessed.
…I love to be able to learn.
I visit center workers in my village who care for me – I am blessed.
…It’s nice to know people care for me.
My sponsor sends me letters and we talk about God – I am blessed.
…I like that she tells me God loves me.
I love my sponsor because she loves me – we are both blessed.

(Written in a possible child’s perspective.)

Dear God

Dear God,
I want to welcome you more so now than ever with open arms in my life to hear my prayers. I sponsor wonderful children who seek your love and wisdom. I have been graciously blessed with love from Clara, Rhecel, Alejandro, Amanuel, Smitaben, and Rosenadette. I hope they see and feel my love as well. Some of these children need you in their life a little more than others. I’ve been asked for prayers for them for their own sickness, family members being sick, school work, their center they go to, their community suffering from weather related issues, and other personal issues. I look to you for strength that I may always find the right words to provide these children with love and comfort in their times of need. I want to always be a friend to them, someone they can rely on. Please keep watch over these darling angels, their families, and other loved ones.
Thank you…Amen.

Sakshi

Still saying prayers daily for my Indian princess Sakshi’s family.  She passed away due to a brain infection.  I believe it was from typhoid fever, because I was informed her mother had it.  I am hoping her mother is healing well now and getting through the greiving process of Sakshi’s death with Christ by her side.  I am thankful Compassion was part of their life because their whole family discovered Christ’s love and accepted Christ as their Saviour.  They were Hindu before, and asked to be baptised and prayed.  I KNOW God has been there for them all.  I will truly miss my little girl, but I will always keep her family in my prayers!

Sponsor a Child!

Hey guys, you should totally check out Compassion’s Sponsor a Child page!  Whether it is to pray over a child(ren), find a child to sponsor yourself, or better yet find multiple children sponsors — it would be so appreciated!

I have been so blessed to be a sponsor.  I have wonderful kids in my life due to Compassion.  I have grown as a Christian and even more so as a person.  I love what this organization does for individuals it sponsors, the families, and the student centers.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave them here, and I’d love to answer.  I’d love to share stories with you too.  🙂  Don’t forget to just click on over to the Sponsor a Child page and read a little, learn a little, and come  back to me if you have any questions/concerns.

First letter from Rhecel

Yesterday I posted about all the kids I sponsor and I said I can’t wait to get Rhecel’s first letter, then today in the mail – there it was!  I was so giddy.  🙂

She sent me a form letter, but also wrote me a nice note.  It was all in English, her own writing, and was so nicely written.

She told me the names of her family members.  She has two older sisters (ages 23 and 24) and a little brother (age 15).  She also told me the names of her three best friends.

Her favorites are: colors – pink and sky blue; food – salad and mango float; song – worship songs; game – volleyball and badminton; and pet – birds.

Her dream for the future is to become a business woman someday.

The verse Rhecel included in her letter for me was, John 14:14, “Ask anything in my name and I will do it.”

Her letter says:

Dear Lori,

Hi How are you?  I am Rhecel and I would like to say thank you for choosing me to be your sponsored child.  I feel very grateful for having again a new sponsor.


What do you want me to call you?  Me I am being called let-let by my family and friends, but in the college they call me Rhecel.


Yes, I am able to go to college with my perseverance and with the pursue of my family.  This coming June I will be on my end year of college in Bachelor of Science in Administration.  By course this was made possibly by the grade of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and for the aide coming from the student center.  I will also like to take this time to thank you in advanve, for your sponsoship will be of great help for me and my family in meeting my needs.  I will pray for more blessings for you to come and to your family.  Also good health that you may enjoy the life God has given you.


Until here.  Hope to receive your reply soon.


Love and Care,

Rhecel

Introduction of my Compassion kids

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Clara, Bolivia – Clara was my first Compassion child I sponsored in October 2011 when I volunteered at an event in Elizabethtown helping Compassion at a Newsboys concert.  I received an email to help with the concert and I had never received anything from Compassion before, although I had heard about it from church when I was younger.  I had a feeling going into it that I would be called to sponsor a child, I just didn’t realize how quickly I would be drawn to her packet!  As soon as I saw her photo on the table, I just knew she would be the one I would want in my life.  I looked through many packets of other children, but none compared to the feeling I had when I looked at her.  I immediately filled out my information and was officially a sponsor of sweet little three year old (now four year old) Clara!

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Alejandro, Honduras – Alejandro was my first correspondent sponsor that I received in November 2011.  I was so excited to hear I could write to children who’s sponsors were unable.  I hate to think that people didn’t have time to create a lasting relationship with their children, and was so thrilled to have the opportunity to do so.  Alejandro is such a handsome fifteen year old boy (and from the correspondence I have received so far, very sweet too).

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Sakshi, India – Sakshi is a four year old that I have only heard from once so far that I began corresponding with in January 2012.  She has a little brother who she loves a lot and plays with she says.  Can’t wait to hear more from her.

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Amanuel, Ethiopia – I began writing eight year old Amanuel in March 2012 and just heard from him last month.  It interesting for me to read his letters since I’ve never seen his language written before.  I’m anxious to get to know him and his culture more.

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Rosenadette, Haiti – Rosenadette is a sixteen year old from Haiti that I began corresponding with in March 2012 so Hannah (my step-sister) would learn better writing skills, social skills, understanding of cultures, respect, gratitute, etc.  Hannah has helped me write one letter so far.  Hannah has had some difficulties that have prevented us from sitting down to work on another letter together, but my name is also on the letters, so I am writing to Rosenadette faithfully.  I just received my first letter from her last week!  I was so happy.  🙂

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Rhecel, Philippines – Rhecel is my most recent addition to the family.  I added her in April 2012 when I couldn’t stop checking out older children.  Her picture kept popping in my head.  I noticed she played any instrument, enjoys singing, likes art and drawing — all like me!  After a week or so of thinking about it and praying, I knew Rhecel would make a great addition to my already wonderful Compassion family, so I sponsored her.  I am anxiously awaiting a letter each day from her.  I hope to hear from her soon.  Rhecel is 18 and in college until 2014.