i want to hear

Posted by & filed under Food for the Hungry, Guatemala.

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I’ve been home from Guatemala now for 48 hours.

I don’t know what I expected.

Maybe I thought I’d have processed things a bit more by now. In some ways I definitely have, but I have a feeling this is something I’ll be unpacking for years to come.

Maybe I expected there to be such an overwhelming response to the stories the team and I shared about our trip that all of the children in Seoguis would be sponsored before our plane touched down in Houston Friday afternoon – that there would be people emailing, asking if they’d missed their chance to invest in this community – wondering what other ways they might be able to help. Several children in Seoguis have been sponsored (thank you!), but fewer than I would have hoped. (I hope high for that village, though, let’s be honest.)

The truth is – it’s really hard to know how to respond to really hard information. It’s hard for me as a writer. And it’s absolutely hard as a reader.

I was talking with another blogger one evening last week and we remarked how natural and breezy it felt to comment on someone’s “What I Wore Wednesday” post or a crock pot recipe, but it’s hard to know how to respond when someone’s telling you that children’s brains aren’t developing because they don’t have the proper nutrition. It’s hard to know what to say – or do.

//

I feel like I need to stop here. Please hear me when I say that I am not writing to make you feel uncomfortable. So if you feel uncomfy - please do not.

Instead – here is what I really want: I would love to hear from you.

//

I have talked enough for now about my experiences with child sponsorship – from committing to Kendy in Haiti 2 years ago (he’s getting so stinking tall!) to meeting Olga and her family in Guatemala last Wednesday. It would mean so much to me if you would share your own child sponsorship experiences!

  • I’m sure many of you have been sponsoring and communicating with your child(ren) for much longer than 2 years – what has that been like? Has anyone been able to see their child into adulthood?
  • How frequently do you communicate with your child?
  • What kinds of gifts do you send, if any?
  • What do you talk about with them?
  • What has surprised/excited/disappointed you?
  • Has anyone else had the opportunity to meet their sponsor child face-to-face?

(this is not a horn-tooting session, but I’d love it if you’d share! I also know that sharing something like this may feel too private and that’s okay.)

And what about those who are not child sponsors? (Please, please don’t feel funny sharing!). Would you mind sharing a little bit about the why not? (There are so many things – tight budgets, not knowing how the money is helping exactly, afraid to commit to a child only to let them down, waiting until your children are older, been meaning to pull the trigger but just haven’t yet…)

 

And finally (I swear this isn’t some kind of 3-point close!), I’d love to open up the comments for questions.  If I can’t answer your question, I will do my best to find someone who can.

Y’all have seriously always been so gracious and respectful in the comments here (I love that!), and you have also been awesome about knowing my heart in a conversations like this. I’m not trying to talk you into child sponsorship here (though, honestly, I absolutely encourage you to consider it!) – I would just like to provide a platform (even just for my own benefit) for discussion about thoughts and experiences in this area.

seoguisgirls

All photos taken by Jessica Taylor for FH.

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33 Responses

  1. Amy 12 August 2013 at 12:09 am

    I sponsered a girl/boy (????) in Uganda for 2.5 years.
    The communication was very confusing.
    Some letters referred to my child as a girl…others as a boy.
    Age changed too.
    It started to feel like I was getting form letters rather than developing a relationship with a child. I eventually became so discouraged after trying to get answers on WHO I was sponsoring that I discontinued my involvement in that charity :(
    It was sad and hard to explain to my kids–and that is why I hesitate to try again.

    Reply
    • raechelm 12 August 2013 at 10:51 am

      Oh Amy, I’m sorry to hear this. Thank you for sharing. It’s absolutely difficult to feel a connection with a child – or even feel confidence about where you money is being used – without good communication through your organization. You want a phone number, to be able to ask questions, see finance reports, and to get to know the child. I’m sorry that you had a negative experience, and I hope it doesn’t keep you from maybe trying again down the road.

      Thanks again so much for sharing!

      Reply
    • Katchen 12 August 2013 at 11:16 am

      I love this! This is hard. It is lovely. And it is something I believe in with my whole heart. I have been able to sponser a child for the past fifteen years. I got one when someone came to my youth group (world vision) and all of my friends and I decided to each get a child. As I have become a parent I knew that this is something I wanted my child to have a heart for. A tangible way to see how lucky he is. How he has a responsibility. How he can change a life. My son recycles every week and earns enough money to fully pay for his own child! He got to pick his child and he picked a boy, exact same age & with his exact birthday. This has made it easy to relate to and draw conclusions/contrast about our lives. The boys write letters to each other. Our favorite thing to send is gum & stickers. It would be a dream to meet in person but for right now it is amazing to have a resource to teach my child about kingdom living and encourage that anyone can make a difference, even my eight year old!

      Reply
      • raechelm 12 August 2013 at 4:10 pm

        I love this, Katchen! I love hearing about how child sponsorship makes a difference in the home of the sponsor!! So cool – thank you for taking time to share your experience!!

        Reply
    • Leslie 13 August 2013 at 4:32 pm

      Just caught the beginning of your blog and wanted to let you know I tried the link to sponsor a child and could not get to that village! I assumed it was because the children all were sponsored but obviously not…I will try again. We sponsor already through FH as well as World Vision and you inspired me to sponsor another so don’t be discouraged! Perhaps others had my experience.
      At least now I know why I was getting a no in my spirit with all the other children I looked at :) It made no sense at the time but now I see. Thank you and Ryan for your faithful witness.

      Reply
      • raechelm 21 August 2013 at 4:22 pm

        Hey Leslie! I’m so sorry you had trouble getting to the kiddos in Seoguis! This link: http://fh.org/raechel should absolutely take you there (I just checked it!)
        We have all of the kids from that village only available through that link, so if you had just gone to the FH homepage, you would have been unable to find them.

        Hope this helps! Thank you for asking!!

        Reply
  2. Kerry 12 August 2013 at 1:38 am

    Hi Rachel! Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts & letting us “go along” on your trip. My husband and I spent 6 months in Guatemala with a group called Youth with a Mission, and have continued to support friends there who are missionaries. One part of their work is with the kids who live in and around the bus depots, so in a sense we have a teeny-tiny role in helping those kids. But why aren’t we also sponsoring a child? I don’t really know. It’s an ongoing challenge to consider what God calls us to do with a level of income that makes us pretty average for our area, but very, very wealthy compared to much of the world. I think it’s easy to land in one of two extremes: Either contributing a relatively painless amount of money to those in desperate situations and mentally checking off the box that says we’re helping, or living under massive guilt that any non-essential purchase could have instead brought life-saving food/water/education to someone in need (though that is true). One thing I believe is important is to be willing to open up our minds and hearts to the very painful realities in the world… To sit and ponder the fact that millions of children have no access to education, spend time in prayer for them, and just ask God how he would have me respond. For some, the answer will be continued prayer, for others sending money, for others sponsoring a child, for others going out to those places to provide the needed services. Something that my pastor says often that I love is that the Holy Spirit is convicting and not condemning. So when I feel plagued by guilt because I am not doing enough, that is probably not the voice of God. When I feel called to do something more and sense God’s grace at work as I take steps to answer, that probably is God. I appreciate your gentle encouragement to consider child sponsorship, and I will absolutely be praying about it in the coming days.

    Reply
    • Mish @ eatingjourney 12 August 2013 at 5:46 am

      Kerry: That is a very thoughtful response.

      Raechel, I feel as though there were high hopes, to increase sponsorship and increase brand knowledge of FH. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, as I do feel as though you did this from a true place of calling. I hope that you don’t feel disappointed because there hasn’t been an immediate uptake of sponsorship…because there is something wildly amazing about how God works. You’ve planted seeds in people’s minds and when they feel called to act, we never know. But you’ve followed your heart and listened to your call. That’s powerful stuff.

      I have sponsored before. I never got anything beyond a pre-written letter.

      Reply
      • raechelm 12 August 2013 at 9:57 am

        Mish: wow. thank you for these insightful words. Planting seeds is critical but difficult. There’s not always an immediate, measurable difference – especially for the planter whose heart is burning for instant growth. Slow and steady. Thank you, friend.

        Reply
    • raechelm 12 August 2013 at 9:53 am

      Hi Kerry!
      I have lots of younger friends who work with YWAM! It’s a great organization!

      I loved your response – very thoughtful and accurate.

      Guilt is not productive. Feeling spurred by the Holy Spirit to further the Kingdom is. They’re different and distinct, yet sometimes hard to tell apart. I think children are probably sponsored around the world for motivations everywhere on that spectrum – the good news is, whatever the motivation of the sponsor’s heart, the children’s lives are being changed.

      I think motivation of the sponsor makes less of a difference to the child in some ways, and more of a difference back home. Operating out of guilt is heavy. Giving and writing from a place of not-enough is never fulfilling. But giving from a place of mercy, from a fullness of of heart and a sacrifice of finances, time and emotional investment – that’s where the Kingdom payoff comes in our own hearts.

      Reply
  3. Rebecca Smith 12 August 2013 at 8:16 am

    Hey girl. We have a sponsored child, but I honestly struggle with communicating with him. Every time an “update letter” comes, I’m flooded with guilt over it. I wish I sent letters. I wish I sent pictures and gifts, but I just don’t. And I actually don’t even know how or where to send them. I suppose I could call and get some information, but life gets so busy. I imagine all the other children in his village getting packages and letters and he doesn’t – month after month. Ouch. But this guilt doesn’t motivate me to action. Although, this blog post did :) I might just see if I can figure out how to send letters and packages AND involve my kids in the process. Thanks for this!

    Reply
    • raechelm 12 August 2013 at 10:10 am

      Hi love! Thanks for your honesty! Can I be honest, too? We’ve been sponsoring Kendy in Haiti for over two years, and we have sent him maybe two letters. *shame*

      I keep reminding myself that guilt and shame are not productive. I want to operate of out of love. But girl, LIFE GETS BUSY! And sending letters to a child you’ve never met is WAY different than to a child with whom you’ve walked and talked and shared a meal.

      I’ve been thinking about all of this – if we’re sending money, how important is the correspondence, really? But time after time last week, we met sponsor children (and even amazing adults who were once sponsor children!) who remembered how their sponsors wrote and spoke life and hope to them.

      Simple things like “you are special” and “study hard” made major differences – knowing that someone cared and prayed was so uplifting.

      I’m toying with the idea of semi-regularly posting a little about our correspondence with Olga (and Kendy). I’ve had questions about what to write or send and I think it might be useful – even just for accountability for us!

      hugs, love!

      Reply
  4. Natasha 12 August 2013 at 8:38 am

    I’ve been sponsoring a girl named Ginette in Haiti (through Compassion) – I started sponsoring her when I was starting college and she was starting first grade.

    We write letters back and forth – probably 6 -10 each year. The letters aren’t overly personal, I’m sure for the younger kids they use a form, but now I can tell she writes them herself and asks about different things I’ve written about in the past. We talk about our families and communities, share prayer requests and verses, and I usually send her photos of me or my cats or interesting things around this part of the world. I don’t send gifts – can’t really think of a reason why not, but it just hasn’t been something I’ve done yet. I do usually send a few extra notes and photos for her to give to kids in her class who don’t get letters from their sponsor. I know that she and I probably write more than the average pair and it seems sad to me that some kids don’t get a letter from their sponsor at all.

    I would recommend sponsorship- I feel like God has helped me to grow in faithfulness through my relationship with Ginette…instead of jumping on the bandwagon of the next popular cause, I’m committed to this little girl, and her community, for the next decade. I hope that makes sense – I’m not sure I can sum up how much it has changed my heart to know that God has invited me into this small act of faithfulness and it has transformed the way I see global outreach and mission. It isn’t everything, and it isn’t for everyone…but it is something, and it is teaching me to be faithful.

    I’d love to meet her someday!

    Reply
    • raechelm 12 August 2013 at 10:47 am

      Natasha, this is awesome. Thank you for sharing! It blesses my heart to hear stories of people who have sponsored a child and – like you said – learned about being faithful in the “smallness” of focusing on one life with letters and prayers and financial contributions. Like you said, it’s tempting to jump onto the next thing, but sticking with Ginette like you have has made an eternal impact on your life. That’s awesome!

      Reply
  5. Lindsey Nobles 12 August 2013 at 10:07 am

    I sponsor 4 kids. Some with Food for the Hungry and some with other organizations (once you sponsor a child it’s hard to let them go). I have met 2 of the kids I sponsor and it is truly incredible…to be able to hold their hand, see their homes, pray with their mothers, understand that they are real kids, created in God’s image living out a very different journey than the one I’ve been on. I believe in child sponsorship. I believe it changes lives. Not just the lives of the kids that are sponsored, but also the lives of those who are willing to give themselves and their money.

    Reply
  6. Ashley Ward 12 August 2013 at 3:33 pm

    We sponsor a little boy named Jeffrey through Food for the Hungry. We aren’t as good at communicating with him as I’d like, but we’re thankful to have been sponsoring him for just over a year. One of the biggest things that kept us from sponsoring sooner was that a lot of the sponsorship companies and organizations seem to give most of their money to themselves (salaries, organizational stuff, etc) and while I know it takes a lot to run these, we’ve felt there was great communication on FH’s end about what my money was actually doing. I did very briefly support a child years ago, but, I kid you not, got 2-3 letters a month asking for MORE money and it drove me nuts. We’ve been very thankful for our experience this time. I’d love it if you kept us updated on your communication with your kids–would be a great reminder to keep up with my own!!

    Reply
    • raechelm 12 August 2013 at 4:20 pm

      That’s so sweet! Where is Jeffery from?

      You’re absolutely right about the finances – I love that FH is super transparent about their income, distribution of funds, and accountability (http://fh.org/about/finances).

      I think I will keep y’all updated – I look forward to that accountability myself!

      hugs, friend!

      Reply
  7. Amanda Michelle (Barnhart) 12 August 2013 at 3:51 pm

    Tj and I sponsor a child with Compassion. She is so much fun and loves to draw pictures for us. I wish we wrote her more and were more involved the way you are with Olga. Taking notes.

    Also – I talked to Tj and we want to sponsor one of the kids you highlighted – so pass that info to me. we are on board and ready!

    Thanks!
    -Amanda B

    Reply
    • raechelm 12 August 2013 at 4:14 pm

      That’s awesome, Amanda!!! Wow!
      Here is a link to the kids in Seoguis: http://fh.org/raechel
      You can absolutely pick who you want, but I just looked at the link and recognized one of the little boys Ryan and I played soccer with (Mario, age 12, with the dark blue collar). He was precious and a little shy and looked a lot closer to 8 than 12!

      Whoever you pick, if you sponsor someone from that community, let me know and I *think* we might be able to get you a photo book from our trip. You may very well spot your child in some of the photos!

      This makes my day, Amanda! Tell TJ hello and high five! ;)

      Reply
  8. Alicia 12 August 2013 at 4:21 pm

    Our church partners with Compassion, and each year we have a Compassion Sunday service, where we have the opportunity to sponsor many children from a Compassion project in a particular country who aren’t sponsored yet. After finishing university, I probably was at a position financially where I finally could take on a child sponsorship- but I never did, until this past Sunday. Why’d it take me so long? I don’t know. Every time I’d log onto the Compassion website, the amount of little faces on my screen would overwhelm me- how could I ever CHOOSE?! What made one more “worthy” of sponsorship over the other? I tried to look for silly things I had in common, like finding children who had the same birthday as me, just so I could feel a connection and finally commit, but I always ended up logging off my computer without ever having gone through with it. This Sunday, sitting in church I felt my heart pound & just knew that God was telling me it was time now, and to do away with the excuses. So after, I made my way to the Compassion table & my eyes caught the photo of the sweetest little girl from Indonesia, with such a sassy expression… I knew I had to “take her home” with me. Many of my friends had stood up & spoken about their experience with Compassion at previous Compassion Sunday services and I’m hard pressed to think of anyone I know from church who DOESN’T sponsor a Compassion child, so I know it’s a reputable organisation.

    I’m a teacher, and all the schools I’ve worked at (Christian schools) have always had each grade sponsor a Compassion child… in fact my class wrote a letter to our Nepalese sponsor child just yesterday! I love the fact that kids are learning about another country and how they can contribute & make a difference, as Compassion says, “in Jesus’s name”.

    Reply
  9. Megan 12 August 2013 at 5:05 pm

    Do you know if we can send little gifts or pictures along with our letters to children we sponsor through Food for the Hungry? After I sponsored a little boy through their website, his little description about what he likes to do and his favorite school subject just disappeared.

    Reply
    • raechelm 14 August 2013 at 3:55 pm

      Megan – have you received your welcome packet yet? I think that information will also come in there. And yes, I believe you can send small gifts in envelopes to your kiddos through FH. Something they’re really good about: From time to time FH has sent me a gift to send to our little boy in Haiti. Once it was a nice paper airplane with instructions in his language, and recently they sent me a nice growth chart for him to hang on his wall to encourage him to feed his body well. In each instance, there is a pre-addressed envelope included, all I need to do is stamp it and include a personal letter. Seems so spoon-fed, but I know he enjoyed the gifts and it’s a super handy reminder for us to write to him!

      Reply
  10. Charlie H. 12 August 2013 at 5:25 pm

    Raech,
    I totally know what you mean when you say it is hard to come back. I got back, about a month ago, from a two week trip to China, loving on the orphans there. Coming back was so hard, and it still is so hard. How do you live comfortably knowing what they live with day in and day out? It’s such a rude awakening. Seeing and reading your stories have touched my heart so much. I would LOVE to sponsor a child right now, but I can’t…or at least think I can’t. I’m going into my freshman year of college and just do not have the funds, but I hope someday in the future I will be able to sponsor one of those precious kids!
    Charlie
    charlie-hammond.blogspot.com

    Reply
  11. Becky 12 August 2013 at 8:23 pm

    We have sponsored a child through Compassion (Sterline) for about 6 years now. We wrote her every few months and send pictures. (I typically send her our correspondence electronically now that it’s an option since there’s a MUCH better chance that I’ll do it that way and have a picture on hand to send.) We have been extremely impressed with Compassion over the years, and especially the last couple years. She lives in Haiti, and a few years back after all the devastation in Port Au Prince, it was very difficult waiting to hear how she fared. (Her family all survived, praise the Lord.) I’ll say that I definitely struggle with guilt when I hear from her. For example, 5 years ago we went to Hawaii on our honeymoon and sent her a postcard and she wrote back that she had never seen the beach but was sure it was beautiful. The girl lives on an island! Or the time we sent her money for her bday and she wrote to tell us she used it to buy rice for her family. Sometimes I wonder if talking honestly about our lives and the things we are doing makes us come across as these spoiled white folks. And really, knowing that we come from a country full of people who toss some money at missions every now and then without ever really feeling the burden, how could she not wonder that? But I absolutely love her letters and hearing from her and getting updated pictures. It has been a very very good experience so far.
    Oh and as far as gifts my understanding is we can only send flat things that fit in an envelope so usually we send money at birthdays and holidays and compassion purchases the gifts. I think we sent a headband once but that’s the only thing I can think of. I try hard to diligently send letters as everyone that I know who has visited a child always tells me that their most prized possessions are their letters.

    Reply
  12. Bethany 12 August 2013 at 9:43 pm

    we’ve been sponsoring a boy from burkina faso for over 4 years now. i plan to visit him one day (perhaps on our way back to Africa!). we love getting letters from him (he speaks french) and my boys are involved in writing him and drawing pictures for him, too. i think once elijah can write a letter by himself, we’ll sponsor another child, perhaps from the same area, so he can have a pen pal :)

    Reply
  13. Alexandra 13 August 2013 at 7:41 am

    I am in the “not currently sponsoring a child” camp and I don’t feel uncomfortable reading your thoughts at all. I greatly appreciate you sharing them.

    As for the “why,” it’s somewhat complex. Most of it comes down to money – after losing my health insurance it’s been a very tight two years, financially; I spend more on healthcare than I do on housing. I’m in line for a good job with benefits but that won’t open up for about a year, and until then I am just waiting out financial lockdown. There are a lot of things that I tell myself I will do and buy later – some of them for me, others for others. Sponsoring a child is one of those things.

    It’s something that has always mattered to me, and something I also did once before. Like another commenter, I had an experience that left me feeling a bit used and just sort of like I was falling for a scam somehow. I absolutely trust that not all organizations are like that and actually I have been meaning to tell you that your experiences and your writings about them have convinced me that this organization IS one of the good ones, and made me very likely to sponsor a child there when I’m up to the responsibility. I looked through the profiles of the children in Guatemala and my heart just broke.

    Reply
  14. EveryChapter 13 August 2013 at 12:26 pm

    Oooof, thank you. I needed that. We used to sponsor and gave our sponsorship over to someone else when we had kids of our own- (can’t really remember why, although I do remember feeling guilty all the time for rarely writing!). I would love to start again. I looked up the list from Seoguis and Jaime is just the age of my oldest son and loves soccer too- I’ll be praying and talking to my husband about him. One question- do you know if Food for the Hungry has any children in countries that speak French? All three of my children (well two now and one as soon as she’s old enough for school) are in French immersion school and although I don’t speak it, it might be really fun for the kids to be able to write in a common language… sorry to ask, I’m sure I could research it but I thought you might be in the know…
    I’d love to look into traveling with them as a trip photographer as well- what a wonderful opportunity to use one’s gifts in a way that actually blesses people! I’m a photographer and I’ve always had a heart for missions but with three small children it felt out of reach without my husband wanting the same thing- photography is my passion but it often feels like a “fluff” job (as does my other job of interior design- which I also love but feel occasionally silly about) so this idea has me really excited!
    Thanks for listening to me ramble! I’m so joyful for your heart and all that God is doing in and with you. You really bring to mind the verse in Proverbs that talks about “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her.” Good stuff- thank you.

    Reply
  15. Lindsey 13 August 2013 at 12:48 pm

    I’ve been sponsoring a little girl named Brenda in Uganda for 7 years and a little boy named Elton Jhon (how awesome is that?) in Haiti for 3 years through Compassion. I met Elton in Haiti a few years ago which was great. He was super shy but once I pulled out a soccer ball we were off and running :)

    I’m awful at remembering to write so I have a recurring appointment set up in my calendar so that I write every 2 months. I keep a stash of stickers/cards in our office so I have something on hand or Compassion allows you to write/send photos/posters etc. all online which has been super helpful.

    I think that our letters always miss in timing but I always tell them that we’re praying for them and their family and I ask about what they’ve told me in a past letter – like school, their dads job, crops etc. and tell them what’s happening in our family, encourage them and tell them that they’re loved. Its taken time but the letters have become more personal over the years and I feel like there’s more of a connection there than when we initially started.

    I love that child sponsorship is practical and that we can walk with these little ones through their lives. I also love how personal sponsorship is and how we can pray for and support our two kids as a response to overwhelming poverty. It helps bring such a huge issue into focus and gives a face to the struggle as opposed to hearing statistics.

    Reply
  16. Emily 13 August 2013 at 12:57 pm

    We have little boy, Jimmy, from Kenya. My husband and I started sponsoring him when he was just 5 years old . He just turned 15 this summer!! We hear from him about every 3 months. He send us a letter letting us know how he is doing… family life, studies, spiritually, economically. It’s always tough to know what to send him, but usually I send back a letter and current pictures of our family. For birthday and Christmas we typically send an extra monetary gift through our organization, Compassion International. I let him know that he is in our thoughts daily and prayed for. I tell him how proud we are that he is growing into a young man who values the Bible. I would love to meet him someday, but I doubt that will happen. Thats ok though….. It’s not about that. I love knowing that he’s taken care of and thriving. My kids who are 5 and 1 know all about him and know that they have a brother in Africa! They think that is pretty awesome!

    Reply
  17. Melissa 13 August 2013 at 12:58 pm

    My parents are from Guatemala. My dad is from Guatemala City and my mom from Quetzaltenango. I’ve been there several times, but it’s been about 15 years since my last visit. A lot of my visits were overtaken by family drama and I do not have many fond memories of my trips. My parents talk a lot about how beautiful Guatemala is and how amazing it would be to take my kids there. Unfortunately, when my parents talk about the natural beauty of Guatemala they’re referring to the tourist attractions like the ruins at Tikal or the city of Antigua. They never talk about what real life is like for much of the population there. I feel somewhat like an ignorant, rebellious teenager because all of the hype about the scenery has made me a little apathetic and ignorant toward the living conditions of much of the people there. My grandma, aunt, and uncle still live in Quetzaltenango and while financial stability is not an issue for them (my aunt is actually very well off), they do have maids that come from the more rural areas and live in poverty.

    Until I read your post, I honestly hadn’t given rural life in Guatemala much thought. I take it for granted that it’s a third world country and unfortunately, a lot of the time I just brush the thought aside because I have no interest in visiting again. I love my family very much and I claim my heritage proudly, but that’s about where it ends for me. However, seeing someone with no emotional attachment to the country go there to love on the people and share what life is really like in these settings was amazing. At this point I’m not sure I can commit to sponsoring someone financially, but your posts have definitely put these people on my heart and at the very lease I can commit to praying for them.

    Reply
    • raechelm 14 August 2013 at 3:50 pm

      Thank you so much for your honesty, Melissa. It makes me want so badly for you to get up to Alta Verapaz and see the mountains and the people! Maybe someday. In the meantime, so glad to know you are praying for them! xoxo

      Reply
  18. Jennifer 14 August 2013 at 11:08 am

    Hi Raechel,
    I have been sponsoring a young girl from Kenya, Annastacia, for about 2 years now through Compassion. I have sent a few letters and send extra money for Christmas and birthday gifts, but I don’t feel like it is enough. I love getting her updates, but I don’t feel a strong connection with her (I hate to even type that, but just trying to be honest).
    In addition to that, I am in the process of sponsoring a baby in Honduras. I was actually on a mission trip to Honduras while you were in Guatemala. We had the opportunity to visit a children’s home, and I met a sweet 7 month old baby named Jefferson. We had an immediate connection and I knew that I wanted to do whatever I could to help him. I think it will be different sponsoring a child that I have held, played with, and looked into those sweet brown eyes. I am looking forward to being a part of his life, and hopefully visiting him again next year!

    Reply
  19. Michelle 16 August 2013 at 7:11 am

    Thanks for opening the forum here, Raechel. My husband and I do not sponsor a child, mostly because of the regular commitment, but Sarah’s and your journey has made us strongly consider it, especially as we are about to welcome our first child. Because my husband is in the military, we move a lot, so we send our tithes to Christian organizations that feed the hungry and care for orphans and widows while we are between church homes. Whenever we have a little extra, or get especially overwhelmed with God’s provision, we send money to these organizations, checking the “wherever the money is most needed” box, instead of choosing one child. Because of your posts, we sent our tithe to FH this month (we just happen to be moving this summer!).

    Reply

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