Hey, friends! We are taking some time off from projects this week because we're working on fixing up some technical-ish things behind the scenes, but I still wanted to pop in and talk about something that's been on my heart a lot lately...
I think that as women, so many of us are natural "fixers," right? We see a problem, and our brains kick into high gear, searching for ways to solve the issue and bring everything back to order.
This tendency toward "fixing" is part of the reason I love organization and decor so much. I walk into a room that is over-cluttered, mismatched, or just in need of a refresh, and I immediately start problem solving: "What bins do I have that I could use to create a system of organization?" "What pieces of furniture could I move around to create a better flow in this space?" "Let me go grab some paint so we can freshen things up in here..."
Our children naturally gravitate toward this "fixing" tendency in us as well. My boys love, love, LOVE their daddy (and for good reason-- he's amazing!), but when they're sick or hurt, no one but mommy will do-- mommy is the one who will "fix it and make it all better." 🙂
But sometimes I come across a problem, and an easy solution does not exist. The problem is bigger than me, completely overwhelming, and no matter how much brain power I devote to it, no matter how much time and effort I put into it, the problem will still be there, at least on some level. I can't fix it on my own.
Lack of basic necessities like clean drinking water.
The list goes on and on.
I admit that many times I am so overwhelmed by the BIG problems of the world that I am paralyzed into inaction. I am only one person. I can't fix it. I wouldn't even know where to start. Surely this task is meant for someone much smarter, much more knowledgeable, and much more capable than I am...right?
Or is it?
One day in our Sunday school class, I happened to mention how I was feeling overwhelmed by the amount of need out there in the world, feeling like I wanted to do something, but just not knowing where to start, and one of our oh-so-wise friends responded by quoting pastor Andy Stanley, who has said, simply,
"Do for one what you wish you could do for all."
And there it was. A starting point. I may not be able to feed all of the starving people in the world or cure all of the diseases, but "do for one"?
I can do that.
There are many different ways that "do for one" has begun to manifest itself in our lives, but one of the most simple and tangible ways our family has decided to "do for one" (or two!) is through sponsoring two children through World Vision.
World Vision works to help children, families, and communities overcome poverty and injustice here in the U.S. and around the world. What drew us to their mission was their commitment to attacking the root of the poverty problem and investing in communities for the long term. They are incredibly good stewards, minimizing expenses and maximizing impact by stretching each and every dollar. You can learn more about how they work here.
Our family currently sponsors two little boys through World Vision-- Pakiso, age 6, from the country of Lesotho in Africa, and Enilton, age 5, from the country of Albania in Southeastern Europe. (Connor and Caleb call them Paks and Enni for short! 🙂 ) We keep their photos on our fridge as a reminder to pray for them daily, as well as keep in contact. We talk to Connor and Caleb about the countries where Pakiso and Enilton live and the ways their lives may look similar to or different from ours.
We're not ending all hunger or solving all of the world's (many, many) problems, but through our small means of support each month, we are able to make an impact on Pakiso, Enilton, their families, and their communities that could last far into the future. There are so many more children like Pakiso and Enilton who are waiting to be sponsored-- you can read their stories here.
For so long my tendency was to avoid "big problems" because I didn't think that I could help enough. I'm now learning that while I can't fix everything, that doesn't mean that my only option is to ignore the need altogether. We will continue to seek out ways to "do for one" (or two, or three, or as many as we are able), in hopes that little by little, we can begin to make an impact on the big problems of the world.
Has your family had the opportunity to sponsor a child? I would love to hear about your experience in the comments! <3