After traveling with a mission group to serve others in Mexico, I was moved to inquire about child sponsorship. When I learned the children I had connected with during my visit were either not yet eligible for sponsorship or already had sponsors, I decided to hold off on taking any action.
During a worship service in November 2015, I learned our church had partnered with Compassion International with the hopes of meeting the needs of children in Nicaragua. For $38 a month, sponsors provide education, nutrition, social, and spiritual support for a child. On our drive home, I expressed my desire to bless one of these children through sponsorship. My husband agreed. We both believed this was a step God was prompting us to take.
After explaining our decision to our young daughters, we set out to search the database of children awaiting sponsorship. Since our church had focused on Nicaragua, I filtered our search to children living in that country. While our girls were at school, I scrolled through the profiles and prayerfully considered the sweet faces as they appeared on my screen. I jotted down the names of three children whose stories touched my heart. When my girls finished their homework that afternoon, I sat them in front of my laptop and asked them to bump around the Compassion International website. Before they began, we prayed for God to open our hearts and guide us to the child He wanted us to bless. I asked our daughters to look at the pictures and to consider the descriptions of the child’s family life and living conditions before listing the child’s name on the paper. They decided to select two girls and two boys each, and they chose to work independently. When they had finished, the three of us compared our list of names. I could not contain my excitement. Out of hundreds of children, the three of us had written the name of the same little girl on our papers. God had immediately answered our prayer, and we called my husband to tell him the news.
Since completing the application online and providing a credit card number for all financial transactions, we have been able to send letters and monetary gifts to our sponsor child and her family. Compassion International has provided suggestions and tips that are quite helpful in guiding sponsors as they initiate communication with their sponsor child. Submitting a letter is incredibly easy especially since there are templates available through the Compassion International website. Our family chooses to write to our sponsor child once a month, and we have even been able to include photos. While we are permitted to write as many times as we would like, we are guaranteed to receive a letter from her twice a year. Through my experiences as a mission trip participant and office volunteer with Back2Back Ministries, I have seen firsthand the time and effort required to build and maintain relationships between children and their sponsors. We cheered when we received our first letter from our sponsor child.
Our family has grown in many ways through our experience as sponsors of this little girl. How wonderful would it be if we had an opportunity to travel to Nicaragua to meet her and her family someday?