how-to-sponsor-a-child In April 2011, three months after I graduated from high school, I felt God leading me to sponsor a child. This may not sound all that crazy, but it was. I had about $40 to my name, barely enough to cover a month’s sponsorship, and while I had been looking for a job for three months, I hadn’t had any luck.

I checked the Compassion website to look for a child, and had no idea I would be so overwhelmed.

How do you choose between almost 2,000 children who desperately need someone to sponsor them? How do you choose when they all have beautiful eyes that speak to your soul, and some of them live in places with AIDS, and others are orphans, and on and on and on?

I have a heart for children. I’m going to college to be a neonatal nurse, and I want to start an orphanage in India. It tears me apart to see kids who can’t go to school or don’t have enough food every day or have watched their parents and siblings die while they are left behind.

How do I help just one when I want to help them all?

“God, how do I choose?”

I decided I needed to be specific in my search. I decided to look at the children with physical or mental disabilities.

And there he was. Djamsel.

I have no idea how to pronounce his name. The sight in his left eye is defective, and you can see it in his picture. He has a quirky little smile on his face, and he looks a bit unsure, but he is so beautiful…

It’s been almost four months now, and I’ve written to my little boy twice. I haven’t had a letter from him yet, but I look forward to the day when I do. He turned 9 a few weeks ago, and so I bought some brightly colored stationery for him for my next letter.

I’m hoping he’ll be able to see the pictures I send to him and know what I look like and know that I love him and pray for him every time I see his picture, which hangs above my bed.

How do you choose which child to sponsor? How do you know which one will be yours, to love and hold in your heart?

In all honesty, you’re not the one who will choose your little boy or girl. God has chosen a little one for you, and He will lead you to him. Your child will choose you.

“The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’” (Matthew 25:40, NASB)


Sarah is a new Compassion sponsor who likes to share about her life’s adventures on her blog, A Christ-like Life.

If you’re interested in writing a guest blog post, we are happy to consider publishing it. Read our guest blog post guidelines.

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  1. Aug 9, 2011
    at 4:44 am

    Absolutely it is the Lord who choses the child. That’s something I always enjoyed when I worked Compassion tables. That moment when a soon-to-be sponsor saw THE child that grabbed their heart. Fabulous!!

  2. Terri Schultz
    Aug 9, 2011
    at 7:32 am

    I agree! Every child chosen by someone in my family or by someone I know in my church was a child God seemed to connect to our hearts. We had a batch of compassion packets at our church a couple weeks ago, and I had picked one for our Sunday School to sponsor, that I will be responsible for, and one for my husband and I to sponsor ourselves. I left them on the table until the end of the day, since I am a staff person, and I wanted there to be enough packets for people to look through. Those two sweet little faces were still there, even though the majority of the packets were gone!

    • Rita
      Aug 10, 2011
      at 8:26 am

      I had a similar experience. I browsed for a long time, trying to narrow it down different ways. I finally picked different dates of significance and searched to match the child’s birthday. I found a 9-year-old girl from Tanzania named Saada with the same birthday as our wedding anniversary. She really stood out to me, but I kept looking. Finally, I decided to save a bunch of links to different children and come back to them. One by one the rest were taken, except for Saada and two others. I really felt a push to sponsor her and finally did. I was also dragging my feet about it and said, “God, if you find a way for me to make a dollar more a day, then I will finally be a sponsor.” That same week, I received my first evaluation at work in almost two years and got a raise of a dollar an hour.” I just couldn’t ignore those signs! I can’t wait to start communicating with her.

  3. Bethany
    Aug 9, 2011
    at 9:29 am

    when i have a sponsor that just has no idea where to sponsor, i tell them to go and just look and pray over the photos. Often one will stand out.

    I also like to tell them if they have really no idea, see if your church works in one of the countries where Compassion works. Does your church go to Rwanda every year? well there’s opportunity to meet your child. All of our kiddos are in need, I dont like to look at it as what part of the world needs it more. To me its about the connection, how will you connect best to your child. Maybe you have a 5 year old son, maybe sponsor a child the same age. Or you have adopted a child from Haiti, then may be a Haitian child. God will lead you to that special child but remember that finding a connection with your child is a great way to help discover where you are to sponsor.

  4. Aug 9, 2011
    at 12:12 pm

    Dear Sarah,

    I agree with you wholeheartedly and commend you on your beautiful post, which brought tears to my eyes. Keep on writing, sweet Sarah! We’ll keep reading! Praise God for you!

  5. Mama
    Aug 9, 2011
    at 3:07 pm

    What a great way to spread the love of Jesus Christ to those who are unable to help themselves! Thank you for taking this leap of faith & trusting in God to provide!

  6. Aug 9, 2011
    at 3:50 pm

    Great post! I love what you said about not having a ton of money, but you sponsored anyway, because that’s what God was guiding you to do. I came across an article the other day on the topic of sacrificial giving – it had some statements that really made an impact on me:

    1) “I just gave away money I don’t have, for people I’ve never met, for a God I love very much.”
    2) “When you invest your money in something, your heart will follow.”

    I love the idea that I’m investing in a child – in the life of one of God’s children. I can’t think of anything I’d rather spend money on – or anything more important.

  7. Ellie Butler
    Aug 9, 2011
    at 4:36 pm

    Awesome! Great job Sarah! <3

  8. Auntie Lynne
    Aug 10, 2011
    at 9:46 am

    Sarah – I am so proud of you and words cannot express how I feel. You and your sisters are all just so awesome! Love you so much and am honored to be your “Auntie”.

    Love,
    Lynne

  9. Pamela
    Aug 10, 2011
    at 3:42 pm

    Hey Sarah, what a great encouragement your life is (and will be). Maybe it’s my imagination, but it seems like God is increasing and pouring out more and more of his compassion, especially where children are concerned. Yay! Love, Aunt Pamela

  10. Memere
    Aug 10, 2011
    at 6:00 pm

    Good move, Sarah. I’ve been sponsoring a child with World Vision for many, many years. I’ve found that I don’t miss the money I send monthly in the least bit. Some of the children have grown up and moved on so World Vision always suggests another chiild to sponsor. I love getting letters and pictures of them. They are so very appreciative of what little we can do. Enjoy your new relationship with your little boy. xxxooo

  11. Granny
    Aug 11, 2011
    at 1:47 am

    “That a girl” Sarah, so proud of the way you express yourself in your writtings , you do a really great job. We are especially blessed to have you and Rachel as granddaughters ( as well as your sisters) and to know you are so caring about the misfortunes of these precious children. Much love to all

  12. Aunt Kelly
    Aug 12, 2011
    at 6:27 am

    Sarah,
    How you have just brought tears to my eyes. We know all are children are a blessing from God. Congratulations and I will be praying for you everyday for this child as well as your studies in school

  13. Aug 12, 2011
    at 10:36 am

    Trust in the Lord and expect great things! He has the power!
    Bless you, Sarah! You will LOVE being a sponsor!

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