Friday, June 3, 2011

To Give Them Hope

So, did you do it? You know, what I asked you to do in my last post. I asked you to go to the Compassion Bloggers website and read about their trip to the Philippines. If you have not yet done it (or if this is the first you've heard about it) you must go over there right now before you go any further. Read a few of the posts, look at the pictures, and then come back and hear what I have to say about it, ok?

The compassion Bloggers are headed home now. (Actually, they may be home...the time difference throws me off. They talk about "leaving in the morning" but that is probably our evening I'm not sure what day they actually get back.) The overriding theme of their posts is that this trip has changed their lives.

They've been in Manila. A place I've heard a lot about. In fact, every time I hear the name "Manila," I have to laugh. Its an inside joke. But I never understood what it was really like. Until now. Reading the posts and looking at the pictures has changed my view of Manila, the Philippines, and the rest of the world.

I look at the pictures and watch the videos while I'm sitting in my air-conditioned office, sipping coffee and staring at the screen of the Dell, secretly wishing it were a Mac. Now you go look at these pictures and tell me if it matters what kind of computer I have. Go ahead. I dare you.

It is hard, as this blogger pointed out, to not feel guilty for what I have that these children don't. But I don't need to feel guilty. I am not going to get rid of everything and live in deep poverty like they do just to satisfy my conscience. I don't need to. It won't help them one bit. The LORD has put me in this place with a solid roof over my head and 3+ square meals a day and an air-conditioned office and a computer. And that same LORD has put them in that place with no solid roof, no meals, no air-conditioning, and no modern conveniences. Why? To make a difference in my life.

Go watch the testimony of this girl and see if it doesn't challenge your spiritual life. Go look at the pictures of this beautiful girl and hear about her vision and see if it doesn't challenge you. To these and thousands more like them, it doesn't matter their surroundings or their poverty. What matters to them is Jesus. They have hope, because they know Jesus.

Have you ever left food on your plate and had someone say, "There are kids starving in Africa who would love to have that?" And you reply, "Yeah, well then send it to them." Okay, so that is a valid the time your leftovers got there there wouldn't be much left of them to eat. But all the same, I don't think I'll ever say that again. Because while I can't send my leftovers, maybe there is something I can do.

The people that support these children in the Philippines do it for less than $40 a month. And it changes their lives. It brings people to them that show them Jesus. It gives them hope and a purpose for living, no matter what the circumstances.

I don't know enough yet about Compassion International to endorse them, but I do think its worth looking into. Here and here are a couple of blog posts that impressed me. You can go look around some more for yourself.

But whether or not I decided Compassion is right for me, I do know one thing. I'll be doing something. And I think once you go finish reading all those blog posts, you'll do the same.

Do any of my readers support children overseas? I'd love to hear about how you do it and about your experiences!

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