Motherhood. It’s the beautiful mess club that many of us belong to. I’ve been a member for 12 years. I’ve felt the joy, the worries, the tug of heart strings when my little one’s feelings were hurt, and the unbearable sorrow of losing a child I had already long loved, while it was still developing in my womb.
Along the motherhood journey, in between piles of laundry, stacks of homework, hallway walls decorated with my child’s artwork (also known to others as graffiti), sometimes it’s easy to lose sight of what it’s like for other mothers. Those mothers who are struggling with their children whether it is a sick child, a child who struggles with friends or school work, or who has behavior problem. There are also mothers who struggle with depression, anxiety, or other illnesses, those mothers who are struggling to make it though the day because they are tired, and those who are doing it on their own.
For those of us in the mom club whose children go to public or private school, what makes you worry when your child goes to school? Is it a lack of clean water? Do you worry that you weren’t able to afford breakfast (or dinner the night before) and wonder how your child will focus on his school work when he’s hungry? Do you worry about the antisocial groups that try to influence your child to drop out of school or to be involved with drug deals? Do you worry about Dengue fever, malaria, or other diseases because there is no drainage system where you live and conditions are unsanitary?
Chances are these are not the things you worry about when your child goes to school. I don’t (and I’m very thankful for that). Sure, I have other things I worry about but compared to hunger, unsanitary conditions, and lack of services my worries feel petty.
What if that was your life?
My family has partnered with Compassion International which is a Christian child ministry to some of the poorest of the poor around the world for 2 years, sponsoring an adorable little boy named Luis, from Honduras. In many ways, Luis is very similar to my own children. He’s almost exactly one year older than my twins. He’s 8-years-old, likes to sing and color, and is excited to play with new friends when he begins 3rd grade. His favorite food is chicken and likes soccer.
“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; Defend the rights of the poor and needy.” Proverbs 31: 8-9
Luis has a family very similar to ours as well. His family has 6 kids. Ours has 5. His father works and his mother stays home with the children. Also, like ours. I’m sure by now you can tell why when we read his biography 2 years ago, our hearts were full of love for a little boy we will probably never meet.
“Faith dares the soul to go farther than it can see.” ~William Clark
About a year before we decided to sponsor Luis, I had read about Compassion on a few other blogs. At the time I thought, “Wow! That would be incredible to do that but $38 is a lot of money for us at this point…”
I started to pray about it, got better at couponing and saving money, and honestly, kept feeling the need to sponsor a child. At that point we didn’t have any idea how it worked, just that it cost $38 a month. I soon realized that if I gave up a few non-necessities we could do this.
One day, out of the blue, I got the kids and Jason together and we went to Compassion’s page. We started looking at the different children’s biographies and after about 4 children we stumbled upon Luis. Until that point we had been undecided about sponsoring a boy or a girl. Maddie who was about 9 at the time and was really hoping we’d sponsor a girl started pointing and yelled, “That’s our boy!”
In an ideal world we wouldn’t need organizations like Compassion International. However, we live in a fallen world. I know not everyone can or even wants to sponsor a child. What I am asking is that you show some compassion and love for other mothers. We are all different. We all have different needs, wants, and dreams. By coming together and supporting one another, we are offering love in a broken world. God is love. I’ve experienced it. I hope you do, too!