If you've noticed the Compassion banners in my side bar, this post will explain why they're there.
See this cutie pie?
Her name is Heidi, and my family sponsors her through Compassion International. We've "had" her for a year and a half now. I'd love to be able to knit a doll for her, but we aren't allowed to send material things. Letters, sponsorship funds and prayers are our gifts to her.
I've never met her in person, although I'd like to. I want to hear her little girl voice speaking to me in Spanish (even if I need a translator to understand her). I want to give her the biggest bear hug ever! To see if she has a snaggletooth smile where she’s lost her two front teeth, to hear what her laugh sounds like. I just want to see her right in front of me with my own two eyes!
Why do I feel this way over a kid I’ve never met? I'm going to post parts of her most recent letter to us, and then I hope you will understand.
First, she draws a picture for us with every letter. Here's the one we got this week:
Not bad for a six-year-old, huh? She likes drawing buildings.
Here is her letter, which is always written for her by someone else (she is only six!) Then it is translated into English.
I emphasized the parts that got me...
Hello! We send you lots of greetings hoping this letter finds you and your dear ones in good health. My name is Martha. I am Heidi Abigail's teacher and I am writing on behalf of her. She thanks you for having a place into your heart for her. She is very happy to tell you more about her life. Heidi wants you to know that in December 2007 her family had a car accident. On their way to Pijijiapan, Chiapas other car hit them because of the heavy fog. Their car went out of the road and Heidi and her brothers got some bruises. Her mother had to wear a surgical collar, but she is better now, thanks God. Heidi thanks you for the letter you sent. She was very sad, and your words cheered her up. Heidi is fine and happy to answer your questions. She wasn't scared the first day of school. She is fine and had very happy summer holidays. The weather here is very hot and Heidi likes to go swimming to the river. The most she likes to do is play in the country and tumble downhill. She likes to play with her brothers and friends. Heidi wants to tell you she is doing well at school, thanks to the brethren of Child Development Center that help her to study. She took some tests recently and got 9, 8, and 9 in her grades. Heidi asks you to pray for her that she would overcome the car accident they had. She is praying for you. Heidi sends you lots of kisses and big hugs.
With love, Heidi
You know, our sponsorship dollars are fulfilling Compassion’s, slogan, “releasing children from poverty in Jesus’ name.” She is getting nourishing meals, education, and attention that a child needs, that sadly many in her village do not receive. But she’s getting so much more than that. The workers in her Center are showing her Jesus. You saw what she says through her letters. She’s repeatedly asked us to pray for her father. She frequently mentions God.
And that precious baby girl is praying for us. That is so humbling. I’m being blessed by our relationship just as much as she is. It boggles my mind when I stop and consider that she is praying for me. A tiny sliver of a girl, probably living in a shack with a dirt floor, is on her knees for me. She has never met me or my family, but she knows that we are responsible for her enrollment at the center, and she is grateful for it. So unlike most of our kids here in the States who have such a sense of entitlement, she appreciates her opportunity. It certainly changes your perspective on things…
If you want to find a way love your neighbors and serve them at the same time, please consider sponsoring a child. You should be able to see one awaiting sponsorship in my sidebar. I promise you will be blessed, and the child you choose will too…
Could you do me a favor? If any of you decide to sponsor a child, could you send me a little note to let me know?
Have a blessed weekend!