Sunday, February 23, 2014

Kim's Compassion: Matthew 19:26

Our sponsored children live in a world of challenges.

Their lives are hard, and at times, it seems impossible that they will ever know a different life.

If there were ever a time to reaffirm the promise of Matthew 19:26, Easter is the time.

Jesus rising from the dead reminds us that NOTHING is too hard for God. Death didn't stop His purpose. In fact, death ACCOMPLISHED his purpose.

There is no enemy too strong, and no situation too final

What a powerful message for our sponsored children! Be sure to send your child a message of encouragement this Easter!

I love this free printable Easter wreath!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Kim's Compassion: Something in Common...20 Relational Prompts!

We live in different worlds. Often, we live on different continents. What we do every day is different. We eat different foods, do different chores, see different faces. Our relationships with our sponsored children can be defined by differences.




And yet, aren't some things the same?

We have something BIG in common--

We both want to know one another!

I believe God has matched each child and each sponsor for His purpose in each of our lives. As we build our relationship, we begin to fulfill that purpose. Getting to know each other can erase so many of our differences!

Here is a list of letter-writing ideas that can help you overcome your differences. They are projects that you and your sponsored child can do together! Each activity will give you and your child the opportunity to connect in a meaningful way--and distance isn't an issue!
Tracing returned from Sohil in India!
1. Send a tracing or print of your hand or foot. Send blank paper so they can send the same.
2. Share some funny stories. Ask that they share one!
3. Write a short book! Send a blank book.
4. Make a piece of art. Send materials so they can make one too.
5. Send list of your favorite smells. Ask for a list in return!
6. Take pictures of 5 of the prettiest things you have ever seen; ask that they draw pictures for you!
7. Follow the same Bible reading plan. Send a response sheet.
8. Make leaf rubbings from your yard. Ask that they use a pencil or charcoal to make rubbings for you!
9. Draw a self-portrait. Send paper so they can draw one for you!
10. Send a tracing of your body. Cut it out! Send a piece of paper big enough to trace their whole body for you!
11.Send a set of hand-decorated notecards. Send blank notecards and have your child decorate them for you.
12. Do a survey among your friends of favorite colors and send a graph. Ask your child to do the same.
13. Start a collection together; when you buy for you, buy for your child--stickers, stamps, postcards!
14. Plant a tree or bush for your child. Update them with photos!
15. Do a challenge together: How many times can you jump on one foot? How far can you run in one minute? Can you count how many times your name is said in one day? How many friends can you make say the word "candy" in one day? Try something silly and fun!
16. Send a list of Bible verses to memorize a week for a year!
17. Share your funniest dream. Ask your child to share a dream!
18. Declare a holiday to celebrate your friendship! Take photos of how you celebrate...and ask your child to do something special on that day. It doesn't require money!
19. Share your nicknames. Ask your child to share his or hers!
20. Make two paper dolls from cardstock. Carry one everywhere you go for a day and tell your child about your doll's adventures. Send the other doll to your child and ask him or her to tell about what they did!

Look forward to fun and interactive responses!

Kim's Compassion: Just Curious...20 prompts to get kids thinking!

My children are 4, 5, and 7 years old. Needless to say, I get asked a lot of questions about the world. While I don't have answers for every question, I am happily prepared to answer some of them--or at least ready to look up an answer!

Why not invite our sponsored kids to get curious?

Encouraging kids to think about and understand the "why's" in this world may lead them to think about the "why not's?"! 

We have access to answers for them. I made a list of questions based on things that children in the developing world may be able to observe but not explain.

There are things on this list that I don't quite I can learn something too!

1. Where does the sun go?
2. How do butterflies develop?
3. What causes waves?
4. Where does rain come from?
5. What makes thunder and lightning?
6. How do birds fly?
7. How do plants grow?
8. How many is a million?
9. What is the sun?
10. How many stars are there?
11. What causes people to get sick?
12. How big is the earth?
13. What are the seasons? Why do they happen?
14. What is inside the earth?
15. Why is the sky blue?
16. What is an earthquake?
17. What do clouds feel like?
18. Why do people speak different languages?
19. How does my body grow?
20. What makes a rainbow?

The answers to these questions can also lead to a lot of great devotional conversations. Consider including a Biblical truth in your answer.

At the end of your letter, offer your child the opportunity to ask some questions about how the world works!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Kim's Compassion: Delivery Confirmed!

Sometimes we wonder if our letters and gifts make it to our sponsored children.

I started wondering if our children might wonder the same thing! After all, the idea of a postal system, transcontinental delivery, and translation probably seems extremely foreign to them.

 Here is a suggestion: Next time you receive a letter, send back a picture of yourself holding it!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Blessed till it hurts...

My legs are on fire.

Not literally...but a searing pain runs from my knee to my ankle. One heel feels like it is splitting open and the side of the other foot screams for mercy.

My thighs are begging for oxygen.

I am running.

I can't think of anything other than taking the next step, of pushing the neon yellow shoes forward mechanically. If I can make it around the next curve, up the next hill...

It is mind over matter. I never realized until I started that running is mostly mental.

I am slow. I am surpassed by everyone I run with. I am panting, pitiful.

But I keep going.

And as I strive to sweat off my excess, somewhere in Honduras, a girl I love is slaving for enough.

Her name is Luz. In English, she is called "Light."

Somewhere in the ache I feel, I sympathize with the agony in her strong arms. I can feel the sun beating down on her brown back, her hands stained from hours of picking coffee. I see her rise before the sun and walk down the mountain and across the valley. I see her climb wearily in the oh-so-dark, not even a light bulb to welcome her home.

I have held that work-worn hand. I have seen the determined responsibility in her coffee-black eyes.

She is in a race, too.

More coffee, more money, more meals...for herself, her 6 siblings, her nieces and nephews.

How can I explain to her the simple luxury of a hot, bubbly bath? Of sinking tense limbs into the sudsy warmth to soak away more than physical ache?

How can I explain this to the girl with no tub? The girl to whom hot water means firewood, carrying water, boiling, no tub to put it in?

How many hand-rolled corn tamales would it take to splurge on the bottle of body wash, on the too-large, plush purple towel hanging invitingly to the side?

The pain reliever that is slowly coursing its way into my throbbing muscles would make no sense to her--who lost her sister-in-law in December because they have no access to medical care.

Running is a luxury afforded by free time, made necessary by having too much and doing too little.

Somehow, knowing Luz has made me realize that a lot of what I consider to be problems are the results of blessings.

To whom much has been given, much will be required. Clearly, I have been given much.

It is easy to forget how much until I stand under the Honduran sun, my neon running shoes in the blessing of the fertile earth, looking out over fields cared for by a 15-year old girl who counts herself blessed and who herself is a blessing.

Have you counted lately? And in counting, has it occurred that out of the overflow of the Lord's blessing, you may have something to share?

Don't say, "I will give as God blesses." It is a commitment you can never keep.

Ephesians 1:3 says, "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with EVERY spiritual blessing in Christ."

You can't out-give EVERY.

The Lord has blessed.

You must be giving.

And the remarkable part of giving joyfully, from our extravagant blessedness, is that the Lord promises that "it will be given unto you again, good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and overflowing."--Luke 6:38

Blessing upon blessing, gift upon gift...perhaps not returned in kind...but in gifts immeasurably richer--the warmth of a sun browned arm across your shoulder, a golden day spent away from the fields or the asphalt track, a hand-rolled corn tamale just for you, a letter written with love from a mountain far away.

Next time I see Luz, we will count our blessings together, as our family strives to turn our excess into enough for many.

The neon shoes wait by the door. I will press on.

Luz climbs home, but in the weeks to come, there will be a light on at home. Maybe just one bulb, fed by a wire run up that mountain just for her--evidence that God is working in our family and hers.

Feeling blessed? Here is one way to let your cup overflow into a life like Luz's--

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Kim's Compassion: Print your Own Stationery Template

Sponsor Name:
“’For I know the plans I have for you,’
Sponsor ID #:
declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you
Child Name:
and not to harm you; plans to give you
Child ID #:
hope and a future.’” Jeremiah 29:11
My Letter:

Kim's Compassion: Educational Gifts

Educational Printables/Paper Items
Flash cards
Learning Games
·       Bingo
·       Matching
·       Puzzles
Timed Math drills
Prints of Famous Art
Country Profiles
Books divided by chapters and sent monthly
Human anatomy charts
Simple Science experiments to try
Litmus Paper
Sun-developing photo paper
Periodic Table
Career brochures
World landmarks
Laminated rulers, protractor
Shapes to count (small children)
Place value tiles
Pressed Flowers, leaves (laminated)
Culture profiles
Foreign language flashcards
Handwriting practice paper
Sign language