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A Field Perspective on Sponsor Tours
Posted By Amber Van Schooneveld On September 12, 2008 @ 6:58 am In Country Staff,Sponsors and Donors | 14 Comments
Wanna peek into my e-mail inbox?
I have the great pleasure of “talking” (read: e-mailing) each day with some of our great staff around the world. They always challenge me with their perspective.
I’ve been reading along with all the posts and comments about visiting your sponsored child , as I weigh the decision of when to make a trip. (I just happen to sponsor children in two of the most expensive countries to visit!)
This e-mail from Samuel Llanes, our field communication specialist in Guatemala, about his recent experience accompanying a sponsor tour gave me a new perspective on sponsor visits.
We’ve talked a lot about how a sponsor tour impacts the sponsor and how it impacts the child, but this e-mail made me realize a whole other aspect: how it impacts the universal Body of Christ. As we visit members of our family around the world, God uses it to unify us, helping us to recognize that we are part of a global family — the Body of Christ.
I want to share with you about what I learned in this sponsor tour we had this summer.
I knew the kind of heart a sponsor is supposed to have but NEVER had the experience of “experiencing” it first hand. It was amazing to see and feel the kind of heart they have and how humble they are. And not just them, but even their family! Some of the sponsors came with their entire family and it was so awesome seeing how their kids were so “into” everything! Some of those kids started passing around a plastic bag to collect food to give later to some of the students at the center. For me, it was really amazing. Also, there were some “advocates” there. I had never had the chance to see one of them, but I saw how a heart like theirs really is!
I saw some of them who met their sponsored children for the first, second or third time. They were so happy (they were even crying!) when they saw them! For me, it was a very touching thing to witness because I could see and prove their commitment toward our fellow sponsored children! It really touched my heart, and those people are a real blessing to me!
A Genuine Heart for the Poor and Compassion International’s Help
I know that the American culture can sometimes be seen as a cold and individualistic culture, but this trip taught me that not everybody is like that. All the sponsors had an utterly different way of treating people (and even me! Hehe!) and they broke indeed a lot of paradigms I had about the American culture. I never saw hearts like those EVER in my life, and I was completely touched by it.
Seeing how humble their hearts and spirits were for the children it’s something indescribable! I could see God’s love showed there and I couldn’t believe it. It was like they were their very own children!
These are what I thought were the most remarkable things I saw. My heart continues to be shaped into something different, and know that I truly want to make a difference as I write these stories! I am so glad I work for God, and I want to serve him for the rest of my life!
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