Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Changing the World, One Child at a Time

Growing up, I was much like any other girl. I dreamed of one day finding the man of my dreams, getting married, and having children. I doodled hearts and flowers on the sides of my spiral notebooks with the name of my latest crush, circling our names together with hearts, declaring we would be together "4-ever."  My close friends and I would daydream about our perfect lives, including our perfect children. We imagined how many children we would have, even going so far as naming them. (I was to have 4 children - a set of twins, Tyler Ray & Taylor Renee, a boy, James, and a girl, Mercedes.)

In my early twenties, I gave up the notion of "finding" the man of my dreams and vowed to wait for God to bring him to me. I prayed for my future husband, and continued to dream of one day having children. In those days, my life revolved around serving God on the mission field, and my heart became open to the idea of adoption. Many of my missionary friends had either been adopted into their family or were adopting children from all over the world. At some point, I committed my heart to adopting, if God ever opened a door to do so.

At thirty, my husband and I were married. We have been married for just a little longer than 5 years, and we have no children of our own. Instead of dreaming to have four children, my heart says one would be more than enough to love and cherish all the rest of my days. Perhaps a little girl to dress in pink frilly clothes and matching bows in her hair. 

This year, my heart opened to another idea of "having" children. There are thousands of children across the globe who have families, moms and dads who love them, but cannot meet their daily needs of food, water, and education. Children whose families live on less than $2 a day. Children whose needs can be met through a simple gift of $38 a month. Children whose lives will forever be impacted by that gift, and the encouragement that can be sent through letters and pictures, prayer, and maybe - some day - through finally meeting face-to-face.

In September, I began sponsoring an eight year old little girl named Mounika from India. She is absolutely beautiful, and I'm honored to be a part of her life in some small way. My dream for this little girl is to grow up and fulfill her dreams, whatever they may be. My hope is that her life will be so impacted by the love of Jesus that she will forever be changed, and she will be a beacon of hope to those around her. 

This past week, a group of bloggers traveled to Peru to witness firsthand the Compassion International ministry near Lima. One particular post from Shaun Groves caught my eye, and I want to share it with you in hopes that you will be inspired. Sometimes we think in order to change the world we have to do something huge. But, Mother Teresa says that "small things done with great love will change the world." Read Shaun's post and know that sometimes changing the world comes by doing something small, like sponsoring a Compassion child.