Friday, February 14, 2014

Love Does

When Marcus and I were dating we pushed gift giving to the limit. Jewelry and electronics were frequent purchases and our whole first year of dating he sent me a rose to school on our month anniversary.

But when we got married and started celebrating our sixth, seventh, eighth birthdays/holidays together (and started paying our own bills ha!), lavish material gift giving wasn't as meaningful to us.

And quite honestly Valentine's Day hasn't been a celebrated holiday for us in several years. I am not the dozen roses, box of chocolates, three foot card kind of girl and my husband knows that. I would much rather have the "Just Because" rose delivered to my office on February 15th or a gift of experience.

So this year we decided to do things differently. We wanted to celebrate the holiday of love but in a way that made it less about us and more about Jesus.

Meet Fitsum-our Compassion International sponsored child!

Fitsum is five years old and lives in Ethiopia in the plains of Mojo with his mother. His father is dead. We are unsure of what caused his father's death and if he has brothers and sisters but we hope to gather more information when we receive his biography packet and we start writing letters to him in a few weeks.

He is a part of the Oromo ethnic group and speaks Oromigna.
He enjoys football and soccer. He is suppose to start school in 9 months. I'm sure his chances of attending school were dim until we sponsored him. To think I could be the difference in a child getting an education gives me such a feeling of purpose and pure joy!

His home has a dirt floor, wooden walls, and a tin roof. The average family monthly income is $3.80. The price of a Starbucks frappe. A magazine. A gallon of gas. A bottle of fingernail polish. I still can't wrap my mind around this number.
Through our sponsorship Fitsum will be provided with Bible teaching, medical checkups, sports activities, hygiene education, school supplies and uniforms, tutoring and life skills training. The Mojo Full Gospel Church staff will also provide home visits, evangelism, counseling and parent education for Fitsum's mother.

We are so excited to start this journey with "Fits" (I already have a nickname for him :)). Sponsoring a Compassion Child has been on our hearts for a while. I'm thankful we are able to sponsor him not only financially but prayerfully and emotionally. We plan to write to him every chance that we get and send him pictures of our family. We will tell Georgia Grace all about him once she is old enough to understand. Maybe someday we can meet this child and connect with him on an even deeper level. I pray that if that is God's desire we will get the opportunity.

Fitsum is our Valentine, our offering of love, our "love does". After reading Bob Goff's Love Does I have felt challenged to get out of my comfort zone and go do things. To not sit back and wait for things to happen or for the next stage of life but to embrace the now and make a difference in Jesus' name. He has challenged us to be His hands and feet. To help "the least of these". To give until it hurts. To reach all nations.

Please pray for Fitsum and his mother that this sponsorship will open up doors of opportunity and provide a better life for him. I'm honored to be his "support mother". And I am honored to be a part of Compassion International.

"The King will reply, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you do for me". Matthew 25:40

Happy Valentine's Day! The holiday of love just got much more meaningful for us.

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