A number of months ago I filled out a sponsorship form with Women for Women International to help support a woman in the Democratic Republic of Congo. I may not be in Africa right now, but sponsoring a woman is something I can do while I’m in school preparing to go. My checking account is lacking much more than I had hoped as I prepare for my move, and as much as I hate to admit, this sponsorship had become somewhat of a burden. $27 feels like a lot for me to spend right now.
We do this a often – those of us fortunate enough to afford it: we send our money somewhere it is desperately needed. And after a time we forget the thing – compassion – which compelled us to write that first check. I’ve not lost the heat of my compassion; I can say this with confidence. Compassion and Godly sorrow are what currently drive me to school. I have, however, become lost in my own struggle. Because of my ill-centered perspective, I felt the need to spend most of today praying for confidence from the Father trusting that with the little I am faithful with He will provide just what is needed. So far He has not failed me; He’s provided in huge ways and in little ways, both of which bring tears to my eyes. Although I didn’t once consider stopping my sponsorship God reminded me of the ways He has proved faithful to me over this year as I begin this new journey.
Tonight I began packing and organizing a little bit more for the move, and amidst some papers I found a letter from WFW which had somehow been missed in the chaos. I opened it and found it to be a survey Marie Claire had completed at the beginning of her time with WFW when my sponsorship first went through. Here’s what I found out:
She is thirty, married, and has one boy and two girls. She has birthed six children total, but two girls and one boy have since died from either war, violence, poverty, illness or political oppression (reasons were not specified). She cannot read nor write. Her family has a home, but no electricity or running water. Thankfully, she is working. She says the general health of her family is poor.
Once more I am left astonished at my wealth and the comforts of my life.
Once more my heart floods with sadness; it courses through my veins and I cry.