When I began sponsoring my little boy in El Salvador I had my heart and mind set on helping a child in poverty.
I saw the photo in the child packet, of this adorable creation of God and immediately wanted to throw on my superhero cape to save him.
I saw my child, who is an orphan, as a person in need of as much love and support as anyone could ever offer another human being. However, when I arrived at my child’s development center last month, God showed me something completely different.
I joined a room full of children whom I had never met before and was greeted as if I were a long lost relative. I was greeted by children, some of whom have been rejected and abused by the people who are supposed to protect and watch over them. Instead of hate or resentment, these children had warm hugs and smiles to give out.
How many of us after feeling the sting of rejection and abuse could do the same?
As I surveyed the area surrounding the development center, it was hard to see hope or anything remotely positive. I imagine that the average American looking at what I saw would think how sad or how awful it must be to live in a place like this.
But is it any more awful for a child in the U.S. to live in a home where that child is abused and feels neglected and uncared for?
You and I may not have to worry about where our next meal is coming from, but all too often we can go weeks without hearing a kind word or receiving a hug.
So there I was standing among the children, and I realized:
Sponsorship isn’t about us as sponsors trying to save these children; it’s about us working together to save each other.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Tony Brizendine is an IT technician supporting our global staff. He visited El Salvador on the anniversary of his fifth year of employment at Compassion.