This past Sunday Compassion International came to our church. I’d heard a lot about the project and was excited for the children to participate in the Compassion Experience. I’ve been on mission trips, worked with children in 3rd world countries and traveled a lot so I know the realities but it was so great to share a glimpse of that with my children. Our family is sponsoring 2 children. So Sunday afternoon we sat down with the boys to introduce them to our new sponsor children. I read their bios, showed their pictures, and answered any questions the boys had about what “sponsoring a child” meant. It was such a great day and I’m excited for our upcoming adventure with this wonderful addition to our family time.
I love blessing others. It’s something I day dream about. I often dream about coming into a large sum of money and all the ways we can bless our family, friends, strangers, etc… So what makes this moment so exciting for me is that a few years ago sponsoring a child would not have been possible for our family. The first few years of our marriage we struggled financially. We had a huge amount of credit card debt and school loans. We had low incomes and barely lived paycheck to paycheck. The financial stress of every day was exhausting. It was depressing to go grocery shopping. I often held my breath as I ran my debit card through the card reader hoping it wouldn’t be declined and sometimes it was. When our kids got sick we had to check our bank account before we took them to the doctor. When the car broke down we prayed our meager savings would cover the bill. Money was a major point of stress in our marriage, or the lack thereof. However, even though we were hard pressed for money we knew our family was there for us. We are both fortunate to have parents that are both financially stable and were able and willing to help us in times of need. We’ve had small loans from family, they’ve paid for medication for the kids, helped get our car fixed, etc. We are forever grateful to them for all of their support. But during those many years of struggle I often thought of the people that don’t have that support. Maybe they don’t have family of their family isn’t able to help them. What do they do?
The other day I was walking through Target and randomly bought shoes for the boys. Just a few years ago I wouldn’t have been able to do that. I started to cry in the shoe isle of Target. It was so effortless for me to put those shoes in my cart and pay for them. I’d almost forgot how just a few years ago I would have been riddle with anxiety as I worried about the additional $12 it would cost to buy a pair of shoes that my child needed. It’s horrible to worry about money and I never want to forget that feeling.
So now, to be in a place where we can bless others, how can I not give? I’m so excited to give because I wasn’t able to give for so long. Even when I had little I knew there were others that had even less and I wanted so badly to be able to bless them. We aren’t rich, we’re just barely on the other side of where we came from. But after all the bills are paid and there is still a little money in our bank account, how can I not feel richly blessed.