The Compassion International Team

Several years ago Compassion International contacted Hearts at Home to inquire about becoming a ministry partner. We determined to spend a couple of weeks praying about the possibility. During those two weeks I had a dream that I will never forget. This was the first and only time in my life I ever felt God speaking to me in a dream.

In my dream I was driving a car and there was a truck full of children ahead of me. As we were traveling along this high speed highway, one of the children fell off the truck. I immediately stopped my vehicle and ran to care for the child. But no one else was stopping. I yelled aloud, “Doesn’t anyone care about this child?” But no one answered and no one stopped. And my dream ended very abruptly.

When I awoke I knew the answer to the question Compassion had asked. God had made it clear to me that we were to be a voice for the children who have no voice. We said yes to a ministry partnership. It was a no-brainer.

It was just over a year ago that my daughters and I spent a week in El Salvador with Compassion, International. It was a week that changed my life. For those of you who were following my blog at that time, it was a week that changed many of yours, too.

Today I want to remember. I never want to forget what poverty looks like and I never want to forget how simple folks like you and I can help. Click here to read through the posts from my trip last year.

If you feel that God is asking you to care about just one child, you can join the Compassion team by clicking here. It’s one team I’m glad I’m on!

This helps me keep a world perspective…

As you may know, I’m a Compassion Child Sponsor. Our family sponsors Daniel for $38/month. Daniel is 12 and lives in Honduras. We pray for him and write to him.  He also writes to us.

Since my opportunity to go on a Compassion trip to El Salvador two years ago, I’ve also been intentional about keeping my heart in tune with the real lives of people all over the world who live with alot less than I do. It’s a perspective check and a gratefulness reminder.

One blog I literally stumbled upon a couple of months ago is Kisses From Katie. Katie is young woman serving as a missionary in Africa and I love her heart and her story. Last week her post was very moving to me and I wanted to share it with you. You can read it Here.

25 Days of Giveaways: Day 7

25 Days of GiveawaysIn May of last year, I made a trip with Compassion, International, to El Salvador that changed my life. (If you weren’t hanging around my blog last you, you can find the posts from that trip here.) After seeing poverty in such a real way, I knew I would never be the same.

And I’m not.

Last Christmas, I really struggled with the whole gift giving thing.  I wanted to take all of our Christmas money and give it to an organization that could put it to use in what could make the difference between life or death for someone in this world.  Of course, my husband didn’t have the same experience as me so he wasn’t quite sure what to make of my new convictions.  My daughters went on the trip with me, however, and they were also profoundly affected.  In fact, my daughter Anne recently hosted a discussion on her blog that will be similar to today’s discussion here on my blog.

Last year my friend Amy gave our family two flocks of chickens through Heifer, International. But she didn’t give them to us.  She gave them in our name to a family living in poverty.  She also donated to the Unsponsored Children’s Fund at Compassion, International, in our name.   I was so excited when I opened the envelope…I was jumping up and down!  Now that’s a gift I can get excited about!

Have you ever considered giving gifts that give back? 

Here are some ideas from Anne’s blog to get us started:

Gifts of Compassion (My Personal Favorite)
World Vision Gift Catalog
A Gift from the Heart – Habitat for Humanity
Operation Smile
Harvest of Hope
*Changing the Present
Give-A-Tree
Heifer International
*Donors Choose – Connecting You to Classrooms in Need
*The Good Card
To Write Love on Her Arms

Maybe you’d still like to give a gift, but still want to help out. Check these out!

Toms Shoes (For every pair of shoes you buy, one is donated to a child in need)
Spend Yourself (100% of the profit goes to the cause each shirt supports)
Ten Thousand Villages (Your fair trade purchase of handmade jewelry, home decor and gifts helps improve the lives of thousands of artisans in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East.)
*Better World Books
*Uncommon Goods
*Gift Back (10% of purchase goes to charity)
*CommonThreadz – For every tshirt you buy, a school uniform is donated in Africa

Anyone else have any ideas for Gifts that Give Back?

*Any link marked with a (*) I have not personally purchased or known anyone who has purchased through them. I would encourage you to do your research. 🙂


What about you…have you ever given or received a gift that gives back?  Do you have any to add to our list?

The winner of the Day 7 Drawing will win the Hearts at Home book Ordinary Mom…Extraordinary God by Mary DeMuth. This book offers mothering encouragement that refreshes your soul.

Don’t forget to include your email in your comment or to email me at jillsavagegiveaway (at) yahoo (dot) com if you choose to blog, Facebook, or Twitter about this topic!  You can participate in this discussion/giveaway until midnight Tuesday 12/8/09.

I can’t wait to hear your ideas!

Another Compassion thought

This is from a reader about Compassion, International. I thought her words were meant to be shared with more than me so I asked her permission to share them with you!

Jill,

I am so glad that you talked about your trip to El Salvador again and how it changed your life. I was one of the people who followed your blog that week and was so very touched by all that you wrote about and experienced. It was a no brainer for me then to decide to approach my husband about sponsoring another child through Compassion. We chose a 11 yr. old girl from El Salvador named Jennifer. She has been such a blessing to our family in the past year. She has written us several letters and has drawn many beautiful pictures for us and has shared many things that are going on in her life. My daughter, Nichole, took the time to write to her in Spanish and had her Spanish teacher proof the letter before we sent it to her. We are waiting for Jennifer’s response now.

What most people, I think, look at when they consider sponsoring a child is the financial aspect and how their money and letters will help that child both physically and emotionally. What people may not realize or consider is what an impact that child will have on their lives. My experience has been that both girls that we sponsor have blessed us immensely and have caused us to really pray for help and healing of the poverty in these less fortunate countries. We have also grown to love and care for these girls and our hope is to be able to meet them someday just like you were able to meet your Compassion’s child last year.

So thanks for reminding us about your trip and I plan on looking at your blog again right now and reflecting on how blessed I am by God to have to resources to help out my two Compassion children, Belsy and Jennifer and to show them God’s love through the letters I write.

Have a great day!

Debbie Goumas

Click here to read through the posts from my trip last year.

If you want to experience what Savage and the Goumas families have experienced, you can learn more here.