This time of year we tend to reflect on being thankful. I have been blessed to visit many people and places and I realize that I am extremely blessed. While I am not wealthy by worldly standards, I am rich in spirit. Over ten years ago, I decided to make a commitment to invest in the life of a child. After much prayer, I decided to sponsor a child in Kenya through Compassion International. I began corresponding with a 5-year old little boy who I'll call Daniel (in order to protect his identity).
Twelve years later, I was able to meet Daniel who had become a young man (This is Daniel in the picture with me). Just weeks before our meeting, Daniel's father passed away. Daniel seemed nervous, but joyful at our meeting. I found great joy as I watched him eat foods he had never tasted before. He couldn't wait to tell his friends at school about our visit.
Sadly, Daniel had to leave the Compassion program. Because Daniel is no longer in the program, I can no longer correspond with him. I continue to pray for him, for he will always live on in my heart. I pray that he will grow in Christ and mature into Christ-like character.
I now sponsor a new child. I recently received a letter from this ten year old who told me that in his tribal language, Natalie means "the one who appears." My first thought was, "Hmmm, that's odd." However, what he said next blew me away. He wrote to me, "You have appeared in my life and brought joy and happiness." WOW! What a privilege!
The amount I give each month to Compassion is so little, yet to one young man, it is so much. I pray that I can live up to my name in this tribal language. May I not only bring joy and happiness in this child's life, but to others as well!