Monday, March 16, 2015

Compassion ABCs: L is for

L is for...


I truly believe that LOVE is at the heart of least it should be. I would never want anyone to sponsor a child out of guilt or pity. Rather, I believe that our love for God should compel us to do what He commands and love others. 

If you love me, you will obey what I command. ~ John 14:15

This is love for God; to obey his commands. ~ 1 John 5:3

and God's greatest commandment....
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind...
and love your neighbor as yourself. ~ Matthew 22:37, 39

So if we love God, we should love others. Sponsorship is certainly not the only way to love others, but it's a very good way.

And then there is the aspect of showing love to your sponsored child. How can we do that? Through prayer and communication. Pray for your sponsored child and tell him or her that you love them and more importantly, that God loves them. 

Which brings me to another "L" word...


Sponsorship is about more than a photo of a child on your refrigerator and a monthly bill. Sponsorship is about relationship, and writing letters is the perfect way to build that relationship. Letters are a fantastic way to let your child know that they are special - to you and God, and that they are loved - by you and God. It is very likely that your child will share your letters with their family members, and this makes letters a great opportunity to encourage and disciple the entire family.

Letter writing is so important that Compassion has started a correspondence program for those children who do not receive letters from their sponsors.

How often should you write? Well, that's up to you, but I would suggest a minimum of 4 times a year. Personally, I aim for once a month, but in reality I probably send 10 letters a year.

What should you write about? Anything...everything (well, almost). I've written several sample letters that you can modify and send to your sponsored child. There are sample letters about seasons, holidays, Bible stories and lessons, family, church, and more. To see a list of sample letters and topics, go HERE.

How should you write? You can use the letter writing template Compassion sends you when you receive a letter from your child. You can use your own stationary. You can use the online letter writing tool. There are many options - choose one and write!

Keep it simple. Don't feel like you have to send coloring pages or photos or stickers. Sure, you sponsored child will love these, but sometimes finding the perfect "extras" to send keep us from writing at all. (this has happened to me many times!) Your letter doesn't even have to be long. A simple message of love and encouragement is enough.

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