Compassion, Obedience

For My Other Little Boy ~

July 13, 2011

Milk-white clouds hemmed in pink and silver, stacked miles high, underpinned in gray.  Ribbons of blue thread in between and my mind wanders off to a place I have never been, a place where my other little boy with skin darker than mine lives in a land that’s been ravaged by war and suffering. And I wonder what the sky looks like over his head.

The lightness of these clouds lifts my thoughts and in this warm sticky heat of this summer evening, I wonder if it is much hotter it is where he lives. I wonder if he worked today, or went to school, if he is tired from the fullness of laboring or from living under the weight of poverty.

The impending storm here, puffs and swells it’s gray chest, threatening, with low, deep rumbles and flashes of light, and wide golden rays slip through in obvious beams, I think of how you, the Father of Lights, are ever present, even in the storms, even in the dark places, across oceans and in mud huts built on blood stained earth-

Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. Psalm 139:7-12

These bold shocks of bright light give me hope.

And I realize that hope is everything, when you have nothing.

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life. Proverbs 13:12

Our Compassion Child, Manirakiza (Rwanda)

My other little boy, whom I have never met, lives in Rwanda. He loves to sing. I have never seen him smile. Not yet. But I know he has hope. We sponsor him through the Compassion program, and through Compassion’s programs he is learning that beyond his daily struggles, there is hope. And this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf. Hebrews 6:19-20

Since becoming a Compassion Advocate a couple of weeks ago, I have tried to write this post so many times. My fingers become stiff and my mind wanders everywhere else and the words. just. stop. coming. I am the least qualified person to speak about poverty, for I do not know the depths of it’s despair. I felt God calling me to Advocacy, and since committing to it, I have felt the cull of the deceiver away from it.   I am not a public speaker. I am not a skilled fundraiser. God is humbling me through this process and while I feel like I am drinking from the firehose, God has been continually, repeatedly, encouraging me, through scripture, through others, through various signs and insights.

The other morning mid-run I felt the need to stop running that minute and go and sit before the Lord. While I had been running my thoughts were in the hollows of self-depriciation. I just kept thinking how unworthy and unqualified I am for this task. How this advocacy thing is not my gift and not something I will be able to really do.

And then God nudged me, I kept running and he nudged again.

Stop. Be still before me. 

Immediately I stepped off the treadmill and sat down with my devotional. This is what I read:

“Moses may have thought that the bush was a supernatural vision. But it wasn’t. It was just an ordinary bush. And when God wants to speak, any old bush will do. Our foolishness only highlights his wisdom, and out weakness testifies to his strength.” Dr. Ed Young

Moses certainly felt unworthy and unqualified of the task of leading the Israelites out of captivity. Learning to live the practice of humility, means recognizing that God can and does use anyone. He manages to use some of the most seemingly unfit people for incredible tasks. The Scriptures are full of examples of this. However useless I may feel, however ill-equipped, or flawed I am, God can still make use of me. And so, I go. I go because I am called to, not because I am worthy or prepared, not because I know I can be so effective at this ministry, but because I want to obey. Learning the practice of humility, is learning to be obedient to both the scriptures, and to the call of serving others.

On September 18th, my best friend, Carrie and I will run 10 miles for Compassion. We hope to raise both money and awareness for those in need, for children like my Manirakiza, who look the despair of poverty in the face every single day. I would love for you to support us. We would love it if you would pray for us, as we continue to train, as we have our hearts continually broken for the least of these. You can join us by donating HERE.  The money we raise will go into Compassion’s Medical Assistance Fund and will be used to give critical medical care to those who otherwise would not be able to receive it.

Poverty stuns us and makes us feel like we can’t do anything to help, like it’s just too big for us to make a difference. This is a lie. You can join us by supporting our effort, and you will make a difference. 

If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth. 1 John 3:17-18

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  • Anonymous

    How amazing our God is!! We have 2 things in common…(1) I just sent in my Adv. app yesterday. :) {And yes, the enemy keeps trying to whisper lies to me, too, but we’ll just ignore and listen to the One who speaks truth.} And {2} some friends and I will be running the Disney Princess half-marathon in Feb. on behalf of Team Compassion!  I am so excited for you, Kris, and will be praying for y’all!!

    • Anonymous

      Oh how wonderful!! So excited for you taking your Advocacy journey too! And yes, stand on the TRUTH and ignore the lies of the deceiver. You will be blessed through this and bless others. And Oh how amazing about the Disney Marathon! I hope to do that sometime! How big is your team? That is So awesome!! :) I will be praying for you!!

  • Duane Scott

    You have a beautiful spirit… I’ve been wanting to do Compassion for a long time now! 

    • Anonymous

      Duane~ {nodding humbly} thank you for your kind words. And you should definitely get involved with Compassion. Pray about it and see where God leads you… It was a year ago that God planted the seed in me and this spring, it grew wild and is blossoming, and I am being blessed and humbled in the process. Praying for you, that God would move you regarding this area. I cannot say enough good things about Compassion…. 😉

  • C Moore

    I’m thankful I popped over from Ann’s today. You are proclaiming to me the same idea of God’s glory in our weakness that I sought to write of on my blog today. It delights me when messages dovetail like that and God confirms from multiple witnesses what He is writing on my heart. That’s been happening all day today (unusually), and in it I feel His love.

    May He wrap you up in His love today, too. This advocacy is a good thing. May He bless many needy children through your obedience.

    • Anonymous

      C Moore,
      I am blessed by your words. I love it when God affirms his whispers that we wonder about, through the words of others, as you are experiencing this day. Bless you and thank you for YOUR kind words to me. Truly, they are a gift. Blessings, friend.

  • amy @ to love

    This is beautiful Kris.  Thank you for sharing your boy.  I have also considered advocacy and am blessed by your willingness and heart here.

    • Anonymous

      Thank you for stopping here to read today. If you are interested in the Advocacy program, I cannot recommend it enough. I pray you seek the Lord’s guidance on it, and follow where he leads 😉 Blessings, kind friend.

  • Jan Cox

    Beautiful. I love your photos. May I use the third one in a post about calm in the midst of a storm on my blog Under the Cover of Prayer.

    • Anonymous

      Jan~ So glad you dropped by today! You may use the photo on your blog. Do you don’t mind giving me a photo credit (please 😉 ? Bless you, friend! It’s always lovely to hear form you here.

  • Connie@raise your eyes

    Wondering with you…what does the sky look like over their heads? My other children live in Colombia and Congo…

    • Anonymous

      Connie~ That’s wonderful. I think about our little boy all of the time… of course, thinking about him so often leads to praying for him often 😉 Blessings, friend.

  • Cherry

    Thanks for stopping by my Pursuing Heart blog!  My first time here … beautiful words, and I love your blog title and header photo.

    • Anonymous

      Thank you for stopping by. I appreciate your sweet comments. Blessings to you and yours!

  • Emily

    This is just beautiful!  I love your writing, wonderful imagery. My other child lives in the Philippines. 

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  • Kimberly

    Kris, that is so awesome!  Praying for you guys as you raise awareness! 
    Our other children are in Peru and Malawi, through World Vision.  Just curious…. can you compare World Vision and Compassion?  I see alot of bloggers using Compassion…Does it matter?  Thanks for your thoughts!

    • Anonymous

      Thanks for the prayers, Kimberly. I honestly don’t know anything about World Vision, but if you are helping those in need, I would say that’s a great thing indeed. I love Compassion and what they do, what they believe, and how they run their organization. I am so excited to be a part of it, and to see how God works in the lives of the children who are in the program.

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  • Michele-Lyn

    Wow… you inspire me :)

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