A few months ago, our 9 year old daughter began to express her desire to become a Compassion Advocate. It began as she asked for my help in doing some research for a school project on the work Compassion does.
She was well versed in Sponsorships. We started out with 3 in January of 2010, and within a year, our Compassion Family had grown to 10. She has one of her own to correspond with and support.
What she was seeking was more... how did it begin? Who started it? What are the Compassion countries? How can she become involved and advocate for the lives of these precious children? What would she need to become a Compassion Advocate?
Naturally, she knew I could help her find the answers.
We made an outline for her project; the basic categories of things she would need to know in order to share.
We went out and bought a laminated world map, and put color coded dots on the Compassion Field Countries, the Compassion Sponsor Countries, as well as the countries in which we have sponsored children. We made a list of those countries to memorize, broken down by continents.
We covered geography, economics, social development, health, poverty, but in all that we studied, we celebrated the opportunity for hope.
We talked about getting involved, about the Gospel, and being Jesus’ hands and feet. We looked at scriptures and we talked about our calling to care for orphans and widows, the poor, the least of these, the lambs...
The kids in the doorways, waiting for someone to open a door of hope for them, someone to welcome them into the family of Jesus and give them hope.
Then, I showed her this video.
I have seen her faith and love for Christ grow by leaps and bounds this fall, and I feel so blessed to witness her life sing for Him. When she and I are together, people often comment on how alike we are, even in our physical appearance. Someone saw us recently and said “You can definitely tell she’s yours... Two peas in a pod... you know what they say about that, eh?” I wasn’t sure, so I said “Uhm, vegetables?” *crickets crickets crickets*
While checking my inbox after lunch today, I found one of the most precious emails I have ever, ever received.
It was from our daughter. It simply said "with this video you sent me I found out what I want to be when I grow up, I want to be just like you I want to have 2 sponsored children and go like Africa and Ghana Love: Jillian".
I never found out what “they say about that”, but I do know this... She is not like me, she is not my child, truly, she is far greater than I, and she belongs to God. She is a born leader, and at the tender age of 9 so filled with love for Christ, so eager to follow Him. Her legacy will far surpass mine.
“At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:1-4
Today, I saw her future; I saw her opening the door for the least of these, the kids in the doorways, the lambs, the lost, the poor, the ones who are hurting... I saw her opening the door, I saw her not imitating me, but imitating Christ.
She is not my child, she is not a reflection of me, she is a reflection of Him.
Rather than “like mother, like daughter” – it has become "Like Father, like daughter."
Edited to add:
A little girl from Ghana has been sponsored by a family in the United States as a result of this post. She is from the same Compassion center as our Ato Sam!