Our family has sponsored children through Compassion International for seven years, starting when Humorous Thinker was young and Perpetual Motion Boy was just an infant. Therefore, getting letters and occasional pictures from our sponsored children, Rajes in Indonesia and Josephine in Rwanda, along with writing letters together at the dinner table, has always been a consistent part of their memories.
Here is a picture of Josephine, who is now 14. We have been sponsoring her since she was 7.
And here is Rajes, who is now 11. We also have been sponsoring him since he was 7.
As Humorous Thinker gets older, it has been such a privilege to watch him grow compassion and generosity in his life, some of it directly related to Compassion. Recently he has been reading the Compassion magazine which we receive periodically in the mail. It includes a section for kids. In the summer issue, there was something that inspired him, and I’m not even sure what it was. One day at dinner he told Carl that he was going to only have a small portion, with no seconds, and eat no evening snack. He wanted to do this, which is very contrary to his set pattern, because he wanted to express solidarity with the large percentage of the world who had no choice but to eat in this way.
This concept has also helped him when he’s felt frustrated, near a meltdown due to not being able to eat some food. He is gluten free, and has been since he was 3. Recently, though, the concept of eating different foods, or doing without, has been much more difficult for him than it ever has been before. My attempts to cajole him, or promise different snacks later, have been mostly ineffective in placating him, and really have done little to change his heart and attitude. However, once he learned more about what kids in other countries eat, he has been able to treat every opportunity where he has had no hamburger bun, for instance, as an opportunity to pray for kids who are making do with much less, and might not have enough food at all.
And this all culminated in his desire to sponsor another child. He earns some money by mowing lawns for neighbors and for us, and he is always after ways to earn money in the home by doing extra chores. He’s very responsible and generous, so we do try to help him find ways to earn money frequently. He decided that he wanted to help the family support another child, and committed to give some of his money every month in order to meet the sponsorship. He picked out the child, and wrote the first letter all on his own. So now our family has added 5-year-old Rudic from Nicaragua.
I look forward to seeing Humorous Thinker grow in compassion and generosity through this new sponsorship, and to seeing Rudic grow as well. It requires sacrifice and effort on HT’s part–he has to continue to earn money in order to meet his part of the sponsorship. He has to be responsible in the letter writing. We’ll learn more about Nicaragua, and find ways to encourage Rudic together. And I know that Humorous Thinker, and the rest of the family, will continue to be led to remember that we have so much that it is absolutely necessary that we share some, or even most, of that with others.