Reflections My car recently got stolen (1990 Ford Laser). I received a call at 1 a.m. on a Sunday and heard Constable Burgess ask me when and where I last saw my car.

It was meant to be sitting on the street next to my block of units. It was found abandoned in a ditch at a neighbouring suburb – hot wired, head lights on, and engine running.

I felt violated. It had been broken into the weekend before. I thought they’d taken what they wanted and would leave it alone. Not so.

This experience brings to life for me that the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.

No, I’m not surprised that the Enemy hates me. But I’m ever more conscious of his sentiments towards me in the midst of the “inconveniences” he’s caused … (something I refer to it as “the effects of evil entering into the hearts of men”).

Thankfully, Jesus has provided a way out for all of us:

“I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of.” –John 10:10b (The Message)

In light of my current situation, I find it especially challenging to hear stories like the family that can’t afford to buy a front door. (I have limited life experience and a finite mind.)

Even though I work at Compassion and even though I’ve visited Compassion children in their homes, these stories catch me off-guard every time. I have questions running through my mind:

  • What does it feel like to be unable to afford what’s typically considered a basic means of security and protection in our culture?
  • Do more things get stolen from this family because they’re unable to provide for themselves?
  • Do they ever feel safe living in a trouble area without a door?

My stolen car situation is a far cry from what families like Bidduet’s go through each day. (And yes, I’m learning to be content in every situation I find myself in.) Nevertheless, through these circumstances I’ve been confronted by my neediness and my poverty. Not abject poverty, no – but the fact that I’m poor in spirit and in need of God to deliver me from trouble and oppression.

Recognising my poverty has helped me to seek His eternal gift of Salvation, and an even more intimate relationship with Him, the only thing in life that has eternal value.

When I found my car broken into, my first reaction was “at least they can’t take away my Salvation.” I’m so glad that Jesus’ sacrifice has become a “truer reality” for me now through the recognition of my own poverty.

I also realise the more I’m stripped of my belongings, the more needs I have, and the more I look to Him for my needs and allow Him to be my supply in every way “according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”

Our Lord knows our need more than we do. He knows the needs of families like Bidduet’s. He’s been filling that gap through His ministry, Compassion … And I pray that He would be the eternal sustenance for these precious children and their families.

I’ve been “closely” following Mel’s video journals from India. Day four is her final video journal (blog). I thank Mel for bringing to life for me how Jesus never gives up on us, especially children in poverty. He pursues and loves each one of them with an everlasting love. We can always trust Him to take care of the little ones. So, thank you, Mel, for sharing these stories, and for assuring me of the ministry of Compassion!

Take four!

Mel Carswell in India – Day Four

Reflections of a Compassion Traveller has been a series of reflective journals featuring field experiences of Compassion employees and supporters. We hope you have enjoyed the mini-series “Mel Carswell in India.” Stay tuned for more like this in the future!

- Irene

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  1. Apr 14, 2009
    at 12:12 am

    I completely understand how you feel. It is awful when evil creeps into your world..
    Have you read Kay Warren’s book ‘Dangerous Surrender’? It’s about her going into the mission field and how it gloriously disturbed her.. God Bless

  2. Lindy
    Apr 14, 2009
    at 5:37 am

    Thank you so, so much for these videos! We can’t visit India ourselves, but you have given us a very meaningful glimpse into the lives of families and children there!

  3. Apr 14, 2009
    at 9:54 am

    Thank you so much for all these video blogs…I do hope you will bring us more in the future! Although I firmly believe in the cause, it’s a good reminder to see and hear that Compassion is making a difference…and that the need is still great!

  4. Mike Stephens
    Apr 14, 2009
    at 4:10 pm

    Mel that’s terrible your car got stolen!!! I am glad you were able to focus on what can’t be stolen: God’s love and salvation!!! Great lesson for me to remember when I am angry I forgot to bring a snack when I go swim or lift weights!!! Thanks for sharing your videos!!! It is a great example for me, I am hoping to get a few videos to share and just so I can remember my trip to the Philippines with Compassion this June.

    I Peter 5:7 “Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for YOU!!!”

  5. Mike Stephens
    Apr 14, 2009
    at 4:11 pm

    Don’t worry Jill I will bring you some from my sponsor tour to the Philippines Lord willing!!! However I do not know if they will be put on the blog!!!

  6. Amy Wallace
    Apr 14, 2009
    at 7:15 pm

    I can’t watch the video right now, since I’m in the library, but I’m glad that you were able to stay positive and remember the important things, even if your car got stolen. If I owned a car, I would like to think I would have the same attitude.

  7. Apr 20, 2009
    at 10:07 pm

    @Kelly Lininger
    “… gloriously disturbed …” That’s profound, Kelly :)

    I’m being reminded of the privilege that I have to serve through the ‘Compassion mission field’. I started reading The Heavenly Man over the weekend and am getting a revelation of how our current sufferings are not worth being compared with the glory that will be revealed in us. ( Romans 8:18) It was a challenging couple of weeks (and I got a bit shaky) but I’m also learning to trust God’s perfect character and His faithfullness. It’s a good learning curve! God bless.

    Romans 5:3-4 “Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4perseverance, character; and character, hope.

  8. Apr 20, 2009
    at 10:10 pm

    @Jill Foley – I’m glad you appreciate the videos, Jill. Will definitely be sharing more of them through the series ‘Reflections of a Compassion Traveller’ :)

  9. Apr 26, 2009
    at 11:12 pm

    A big thank you!
    In all honesty, I am so shocked and humbled–and feeling many other warm fuzzies right now–about everyone’s feedback on the video blogs. As mentioned way back when, Irene had to twist my arm to do these. But I am so glad we did because it allowed us bring to life the experiences of our trip and also, to tell the stories of some of the kids we met. They are just so courageous in the face of adversity. Praise God for them I say and praise God for Compassion. So “thank you” to everyone who watched and commented. Thanks for your kind words, your enthusiasm and simply for wanting to do something amazing for the poor – and for God.
    God bless, Mel Carswell

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