We've been sponsoring Miqueias through Compassion International for a year now. I know this because his birthday is rapidly approaching. When we received his sponsorship packet in the mail, the first thing we noticed was that his birthday was coming up soon. We put $ for a gift in the mail right away.
In honor of his birthday, I want to answer one of the questions that I have been asked by brothers and sisters in Christ about child sponsorship. If you want to know the mechanics of how it all works, you can visit www.compassion.com to learn more.
The question comes from folks whose desire to follow the Lord I do not question. I was, however, somewhat taken aback by it.
"What if the local church that Compassion is partnering with is not teaching real Biblical doctrine?"
My short answer is: Will we be paralyzed by the thought that perhaps the local church partner won't share our Biblical views on everything? Will we let a child starve and believe that he is unworthy of love because there is a possibility that the local church, which is working to feed, clothe, and teach these children might disagree with us? Compassion, in partnership with the church, does not only teach the children about Jesus, they teach them how to read and how to brush their teeth, and how to care for themselves. Most of all, they are given hope. You can be a real, living, breathing, almost touchable Christ on earth to a child. You write letters of encouragement. You send photos. You tell them that God loves them, that Jesus died for them, that you serve them because you serve the Most High God.
Working with the teens at church, we get a glimpse of the hopelessness they have when Mom and Dad don't know God and act accordingly. Now add third world style poverty on top of that, and maybe, just maybe you can have some vague idea of how hopeless their lives are without Compassion. You can be a beacon of hope to a child who believes he is no better than the filth that lines the streets. Or will fear of accidentally sponsoring the Devil's work keep you closed up in a hole-shut off and unaccessible to the "least of these" who are suffering right now? Is it God's will that no one help these children, and in turn, their families? Where do you come in? How do you get involved?
God calls us all to minister in some way. How do you minister? I'd love to hear about what you do for God.