Jan 28, 2010

T-Minus 5 days!!

So, I'm headed to Kenya in 5 days with Compassion International.

The company I work for has a partnership with this amazing ministry. During the summer months, we work very hard to get as many children sponsored as we possibly can (we hit 3000 sponsorships last summer alone!) Part of this mission includes a Vision Trip each year.

This trip serves several purposes.
  • One, it allows the Ministry Event Directors and Coordinators see Compassion in action first-hand. We visit the country field office and get a better understanding of how things work.We will also visit several Compassion Projects where we will meet kids and families of sponsored children to see first-hand how Compassion has changed their life.
  • Two, many of us get to actually meet our sponsored kids. Have I mentioned how excited I am about this? I'll be meeting Kelvin, a precious 8-year old that my family sponsors (the day after his birthday...can you say PARTY!!), and Alexander, an LDP student that about 22 of us sponsor. (LDP stands for Leadership Development Program. Alexander is a college student who went through the Compassion program as a child and was then selected to attend college through further sponsorship.)
  • Three, we will meet the LDP students that will come to the states in May to travel with our summer teams. This will be the first time any of them have been to the states. Culture shock is a reality for them! Meeting them ahead of time helps them with their transition. Seeing familiar faces when they arrive is invaluable to them. 
  • Four, we take several members of our production staff on the trips to capture video and pictures to be shown during the summer. We have some amazingly talented people who have the ability to film and portray stories in ways that help people get a better grasp of the mission of Compassion. 
In addition to these things...the experience of the trip itself is something that cannot be measured.

This will be my first Compassion trip. While I work directly with the department who goes on these trips, I took a non-traveling position the very year we started the relationship with Compassion. To be honest, I've always been excited for the team to go on these trips, but have also REALLY wanted to go myself. I am so very thankful for the opportunity to finally go.

I'm hoping to be able to post about the trip daily. We have internet capabilities at our hotel, but it can be sketchy.

Jan 27, 2010



This is the word I would choose to describe my current state.

Recent tensions (in list format b/c I don't have time right now to expound). Think of it as a stream of consciousness post:

  • Working mom vs. Stay-at-home mom-
    •  I have guilt over not being with my child all day long. She loves her daycare, and she's very well-taken care of, but somehow I feel that someone else is raising my child. (I know this is irrational, but these are the things that pop in my mind. Also, I LOVE my job and get to do amazing things every day.)
    • My house is never as clean as it should be. Who wants to clean when they get home at 5:30???? Not me, no sir!
    • And speaking of eating...dinner is never as homemade as I want it to be! All the blogs I seem to read are done by stay at home moms who talk about their fantastic recipes. Wish I could do it, really do.
    • I love my job. This is what I keep coming back to. It has purpose. I love it. There.
  • Haiti
    • My heart is truly heavy over the earthquake that occurred in Haiti. I feel more attached to this disaster than past ones. It is constantly on my mind. 
    • Do I continue to look at the pictures, or do I stop? TENSION! I don't want to forget, but I also don't need to see the picture I saw of precious babies who did not survive. 
    • My friend, Allen Jackson, wrote a post on how disasters from a distance seem to bring about a distant response. I don't want to forget, but I can't keep looking at these pictures
    • I think I'm more emotionally connected to this disaster for a few reasons
      • I have a sponsored child in Haiti.
      • Some people I work with went with Compassion International a little over a year ago, and I know how bad off this country was BEFORE the earthquake.
      • I know some couples in the process of adopting from Haiti and have been seeing pictures of their sweet faces for some time now. After the earthquake, they saw fit to speed up these adoptions instead of dragging an already too-long process out even further and BOTH kids are now with their adoptive families and are doing great. HUGE PRAISE! Huge. Really.
  • I can't find my makeup. Mad at myself that this upsets me when there are people who can't find their families.
Like I said...tension. I think it's healthy tension. Helps me not take myself too seriously. Keeps me in check for sure.

Wow, this was a random post.

Jan 18, 2010

Ways to help

I have come across several blog sites that are donating proceeds to Haiti from items they would usually profit from.

The Rusted Chain is donating $10 from every "Blessed" necklace to Compassion International. As of Friday afternoon, they had $900 raised. Awesome.

Pitter Patter Art will send you a free key fob for any donation made from her site (not sure how long this offer is available.)

Aaron and Jamie Ivey, who are in the process of adopting precious little Amos from Haiti are raising money through the purchase of this t-shirt:

For those who would just like to give, you can always go to Compassion's site and donate at any time.

Jan 14, 2010

Meet Kelvin

I wrote this blog back in November when my family began sponsoring Kelvin through Compassion International. I am now 3 weeks away from my Kenya trip with Compassion where I will get to meet Kelvin. I'm so excited I could bust!

Original post (November 11, 2009):

Today I sent Letter #1 to the Compassion child my family is now sponsoring.

Meet Kelvin:

I had about 5 lines to write my first message. Had much more to say than 5 lines would allow, but managed to squish it all in.

Kelvin is 8 years old. Trying to put into words our reasoning for sponsoring him is hard enough, much less trying to communicate those reasons to an 8 year old. I'm sure I made it harder than it needed to be.

How do I let him know that I really do love him? That I want my child to think of him as a member of our family? That he shared a birthday with my grandmother who used to read Bible stories to me and impacted me more than she will ever know (sad that I never told her before her dementia started.)

Found out a couple of months ago that I have the opportunity to go to Kenya with Compassion International through a partnership my office has with this amazing ministry. Chances are very high that I will get to meet Kelvin on that trip. It's the main reason we chose him. To say I'm excited is a gross understatement.

Here's the final product on my first letter to Kelvin...I have plenty of time to tell him much, much more. Excited to begin this journey with him.


Matt and I are so excited to welcome you to our family! Our prayer is that we will grow closer to you through our letters, but more importantly, that you would grow closer to Jesus. It is because of Jesus that we sponsor you and love you very much. 
Your picture is up where we can always see it to remind us to pray for you. 
You are such a handsome young man!
We look forward to hearing from you, and watching you grow into an amazing young man. We believe in you!

Much Love,

Trying Something New

I've been wanting to start a consistent blog for some time now, but have not been sure exactly what my blog should be about.

My immediate thought was to blog about my family life...to post pictures of my little girl as she grows...to update people on the happenings of our family. However, my husband whom I love and adore is a little iffy about putting personal family pictures and information out there for the world to see. I get that and I will respect his wishes. I've created a private blog just for myself where I can post these types of things.

Now, on to this blog.

The company I work for has a close partnership with Compassion International. Through the years, this partnership has fanned the fire in my heart for the poor and needy. The fire was always there, but I now have a way to put "hands and feet" to the desire.

In addition, my church is also participating in what we call "The Radical Experiment." Again, another venue that is fanning the fire in me.

All this to say that my blogging desire now officially has a purpose...an outlet for the hopes and dreams I have to make the most out of this one life I have been given. A life that hopefully is not much about me, but is about the God I serve. To Him be the glory.

*Disclaimer-I in no way believe I am a gifted writer. I just want to make sure that I am utilizing all means possible to educate people on tangible ways they can make an impact in this world we live in. We have precious few years on earth, and I for one want to make the most of them. If one Compassion child is sponsored as a result of this blog...WELL WORTH IT.