Over an year ago, my husband and I felt called to sponsor a child. Our family started sponsoring a little girl in India. Her name is Apeksha. She is an year younger than our daughter. She happens to be living in the area that I have been to. Having grown up in India, I have some ideas about what her living condition might be.
“For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore I command you, ‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor, in your land.” Deuteronomy 15:11
Sponsors play significant role in a life of a sponsored child. In addition to providing monthly financial monthly support, they can also help in spiritual development of the child by writing a letter on regular basis.
I wish I could proudly say that our letter writing record has been stellar so far.Except that it is NOT. In fact, we fell off the wagon very bad. As guilty as I felt about not writing to Apeksha as much as I would have like it to be, worse I felt unable to write. Not because I forgot or I didn’t had time. I simply could not get up and get going to write despite of easy online writing tools and gazillions of letter writing ideas available to our disposal.
I knew I needed help, so I finally called up some of my friends and enlisted them to pray for us that
- God will motivate us to write to our sponsored child more diligently.
- God will encourage us to be ready to show the love of Christ through our indirect conversation with our child, through our words or crafts etc.
Prayer worked. We decided to write ‘once a month’ at least. I know it is not praiseworthy but it is a start for us and it is better than hardly ever. We thought, we will make date of her birthday to be the letter writing day every month. One month later on our letter writing day, we remembered and we failed again.
But wait, this is not all; we made up for lost 23rd on 26th. All of us in the family participated in sitting around our dinner table writing, making, cutting, gluing some crafty items.
What I know
- Prayer is very important.Be very diligent about praying for your sponsored child and seek ways to reach him/her in creative impactful ways.Pray with your spouse and encourage each other.Thinking back,it astonishes me that even when we could not keep up with the letter writing regularly,our children remembered to pray for her because they watched and heard their Dad modeling it for them.They see the picture of her with her family set on our mantle.Letters from your child can give you clue about your child’s life. At present, Apeksha does not write by herself to us, compassion worker writes for her and does a very good job in communicating about her.
- Praying friends are most needed.I have found that sometime I am not able to pray effectively despite of the desire of praying. That’s when I seek help from my prayer warrior friends.
- Set a letter writing day but be flexible with your time.We decided to use Apesksha’s birth date as the letter writing day every month as a guideline.You can make first Friday of the month to be a letter writing day or so,just whatever works with your family schedule. However,do not get frustrated if you could not keep with it. Life happens.Be flexible with your time but do not sway and postpone so much that weight of your busy schedule pushes your letter writing far off from your priority list.
- Involve your whole family.Letter writing is NOT mom’s job alone.This needs to be indoctrinated in your family .There is a room for everyone to participate in it either by taking turns in letter writing or making paper goodies or researching , owning and leading up an idea to see it through .We make it a family project.
- Give your children lots of wiggle room.My son or daughter do not have patience to sit through writing and crafting all at once. We made lego house, played soccer and rode bike in between the letter writing activities. It took us interrupted half day to get most everything done. Imperfection is authentic and perfect. I do not obsess over that one hand of the cutout doll is longer than the other.
- It’s not all about your personal interest.I know my son and husband would rather be outside playing basketball then glue the masking tape around the bracelets but my husband understood the importance of doing so as a family.
- Great learning experience for children and whole family.Letter writing and crafting with kids gives me great opportunity to talk about the Indian culture.My kids would ask us question like,”Does Apeksha has playground and slider?” “Does she go to school like ours?”.”Would she have birthday cake?””I love my dog,does she have pet?”
So what did we make ?
To see the goodies we put together,you will have to read the next post
“See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven”- Matthew 18:10