|Colour Conference 2010|
This week we received an update from Compassion about our little boy Eric Nsabyimana. I love the work that Compassion does in releasing children from poverty and exploitation. At the Colour Conference this year there were a number of graphic illustrations and displays depicting the hopelessness that so many children face on a daily basis (picture above). Powerful reminders that for so many, childhood is a rare gift indeed. It is hard to imagine that childhood can be robbed from such little lives. It is easy to feel overwhelmed and wonder if our small response will make a difference, especially when we seem so removed from these experiences and know that we may never see how our little can mean so much. It is a privilege to partner with such an amazing organisation bringing hope to so many.
I'll never forget the day 3 1/2 years ago when we decided to choose Eric and in doing so change his whole world. I had only 6 months before become a single mother, yet I felt compelled to open my heart and extend the hand of kindness beyond our own little family. I knew that we could build someone else's home and in doing so that God would continue to build ours. Together the children and I scanned the sea of faces spread out on the table. So many needing help! How do you choose only one? Eventually we decided that Eric was the one. I can still remember the excitement on my kids faces knowing that we were about to do something significant.
When we saw his latest photo this week we were all so proud. He was so cute in his little work boots. In the humdrum of life it is easy to forget that another family is depending on us to be the change and when a budget is tight, it is satisfying to know that our stretch is their gain. This week I took the opportunity to thank my kids for continuing to open their hearts to humanity. I thanked them for the times that they have had to go without. They were truly humbled, for in the scheme of things ... we are so truly blessed.
Eric is now in level 1 of primary school in the hillside country of Matare in Rwanda. His duties include carrying water and gathering firewood (a fact that my kids found interesting ... cleaning a room doesn't sound so bad after all). There are 5 children in the family and I love that we are taking care of all of them by providing for him. It is incredible to think that sponsorship provides bible teaching, health screening, hygiene and nutrition, recreational activities, field trips, school supplies, tutoring, home visitation and domestic supplies. One day we hope to meet all of them. For now just knowing that we are changing the lives of a family we have never met is just ... well ... seriously, so amazing.