“Colors come to my mind in waves. They fill my sight and overflow my senses. I am not okay until I let them out…they only come out through my paintings,” twelve-year-old Hector the artist explains. This is because Hector has a condition called synesthesia which enables him to see plain things as colors. Things like numbers and letters appear to him in color, even when they are black on a white page.Continue Reading ›
A trip to the Dominican Republic gave Compassion artist, Robbie Seay a unique opportunity to see how child sponsorship shapes the lives of children living in poverty.Continue Reading ›
Thailand is full of coffee artists. Wherever you go for a cup of Joe, they try to outdo their coffee competitors with creative patterns and swirls of blended foam.
I think of my own sponsored child who, in his very first letter at the age of seven, told me of his intention to be an artist. This is a little boy in rural Africa who had never owned a box of crayons or a set of paints in his life. But what does that matter to a child who has faith?
People often ask me what I REALLY do for my job. It’s a valid question since for some of my friends it doesn’t seem like working with artists is that demanding of a job.
Actually, the time I spend traveling for this job should tell you how demanding it really is. I travel on average about 120 days out of the year.
As I try to master the art of video blogs, I’m going to bring you “A Day On The Road With Spence.” I’m sure you all will be glued to your seats for this Spielberg-like master piece.
So what does this have to do with taking artists to the next level? Not a whole lot other than I needed some sort of intro for this blog. On to the post….
When an artist decides they want to work with Compassion, I know going into this relationship that they have a heart for children living in poverty.
For most of us, that seems like its a “given.” For some artists, though they have a heart for it, they’ve never really seen the kind of poverty we are talking about and dealing with on a daily basis.
So on Compassion’s Artist Relations team, we take these artists overseas to see our work first hand. It’s a great experience for them and one of my favorite parts is watching these artist “get it.”
Meaning, you actually see them being transformed by what they are experiencing as they meet these children and their families and by learning how the local church is involved in these children’s lives on every level.
It’s at this point that an artist’s passion for releasing children from poverty goes to the next level. It becomes a part of their everyday lives. Not just a part of their show.
Last spring, I took country artist Bryan White to Ecuador to meet his sponsored child. It was an awesome trip!
After we got home, Bryan called me and said, “Spence, I wish I could travel with Compassion to visit every child in the program. This has changed me forever.”
You know…he was right. He talks to everyone he knows about children in poverty and how sponsoring a child changes children’s lives forever.
I love Bryan’s attitude. It’s what taking things to the next level is all about.
For Michael W. Smith, he has been talking about Compassion for over 20 years now. He’s been to see our work 11 times — 10 to Ecuador to see his sponsored child and once to Kenya.
I took Michael to Kenya in January of 2007, and we shot this video below. What you see on this video was a small example of watching a man, Michael, who had been talking about Compassion for all these years become even more passionate about the work being done for kids all over the world and the urgency to bring hope to these children in need.
Until next time friends…