Full Circle

Right now there is a group of bloggers in Uganda with Compassion International.  They are visiting child centers and homes and blogging about their experiences.  It’s somewhat of a full circle moment.  Six years ago in February 2008, Compassion took their first group of bloggers to Uganda.  One of those bloggers happened to be a worship leader who’s blog I read regularly.  For a week I read about Carlos’ and the other blogger’s experiences and saw through the wonderful photographs they difference that Compassion was making in these children’s lives, their family’s lives, and their community.

During the course of that week I made a decision.  The decision to move past the idea that sponsoring a child would be a good thing to do….someday.  The decision was to action.  My family and I circled around the computer and together we choose to sponsor 9-year old Mwajuma from Tanzania.

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In the past 6 years we have watched Mwajuma grow into a beautiful young woman.  We have been blessed by her letters.  She shares with us what she is learning from God’s word, prays for us, and we pray for her.

But something more has happened in 6 years.  Two years ago we added Wannaporn from Thailand to our Compassion family.  One year ago, I signed up to be a volunteer Child Advocate with Compassion.  Ten months ago I was assigned my first correspondent child. (Currently I have 6 children to whom I write to regularly as their correspondent sponsor).  Seven months ago I decided to take a big step, jump out of my comfort zone, and fly halfway around the world to meet our precious Mwajuma.

I have had the joy of leading Compassion Sunday events at my church, speaking at conferences about Compassion’s work, and walking family and friends through the process of beginning their sponsorships.  I believe in Compassion’s mission to release children from poverty in Jesus’ name.   So in addition to the joy of meeting this beautiful girl in March, I pray for that God will use me to take what I see and experience and make a difference (in whatever way He sees fit).

You can follow along with the group of bloggers in Uganda HERE

Do you want to know more about Compassion and sponsoring a child?
CLICK HERE

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Momentum

The ball has been rolling on my trip to Tanzania for some time, but now it’s picking up speed.  The trip is more than an abstract thought of “I’m traveling to Africa next year”.  It’s becoming part of the nuts and bolts reality of each day.  Over the last few days I have sent in my visa application and researched and ordered a new camera.  Today it was a visit to the travel clinic.  I received 3 shots, 2 prescriptions, and brought home medicine to vaccinate myself against typhoid.  Not a typical day in my world.

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As I was driving home I was again hit with the thought of what I have compared to a lot of people in this world.  (Believe me, it’s been happening a lot lately.)  With no more than a short drive and a few hundred dollars (ouch!) I was protected against diseases that claim the lives of millions of children each year.  Malaria kills approximately 1 million children each year….most of them in Sub-Sahara Africa.  My nurse at the clinic went through preventative measures for traveling as well as how to treat problems such as traveler’s diarrhea. (A altogether fun topic to be sure)  And while we may not give such an illness too much thought, 1.8 million children will die of diarrheal-related deaths this year.

And yet through the work of Compassion International children are receiving medical care, education, & nutrition that they may not have otherwise.  I have heard account after account of how sponsorship has made all the difference in the lives of children all over the world.  In March, I’ll see it for myself.

So I sit here typing with 2 sore arms.  A small price to pay for the adventure to come.