in need of a little Compassion...

Nope, not me. I'm doing just fine. (Ish.)

But there are kids all over the world who could use a little Compassion. Y'all know that I'm passionate about adoption, but even more than that, I'm passionate about keeping would-be orphans with their families whenever possible.

Because the truth is, many orphans have at least one living parent, but a mess of reasons - largely stemming from poverty - render some of those parents unable to care for their children. Sometimes if those barriers can be removed, families can stay together.

That's why we give to Morning Light Ministries in Taiwan (see the end of this post for more on that), because they don't just facilitate adoptions but they also work to remove barriers so that single mothers can have the option to keep their children. And that's why we give to Compassion, because we love a fourth child like our own.

This Joselin (note the different spelling) isn't ours, though, and she won't ever be. She has a family, and she writes about them in her letters to us. We prayed for mother's health when she was fighting malaria, and we've prayed for other family members when Joselin has mentioned them in her letters to us. We thank God for her family. (What's even sweeter is that she writes in her letters that she's praying for us, too.)

Our support each month goes toward practical needs, like food and education and medical care, and for many Compassion families, this support makes the difference between a family staying together and a family having to fracture to survive. That's part of why I encourage friends to consider Compassion if they're interested in sponsoring a child in need.

But it's more than that. We're comfortable supporting Joselin through Compassion because we know that our $38 each month goes toward more than just her physical and educational needs. Compassion is unashamed about presenting the gospel. Some other programs that allow the sort of financial "adoption," if you'll permit that word here, refuse to emphasize the gospel. Compassion works exclusively through the local church in the countries they operate, and they share Christ in their words and actions.

That matters a whole lot to me. In fact, when Lee and I consider ministries to support financially, we look for how they partner with the local church and how they share the gospel in word and deed. It's a deal-breaker for us if a ministry refuses to partner with churches or share Christ with those they serve. Yes, meeting earthly needs is important, but it's futile if we neglect the eternal need of each person to know Jesus. (On the other hand, we have never supported a church or ministry that isn't concerned about the earthly needs of those they serve, because it's disingenuous to say we care about your soul but not your body.)

So we support Compassion. And occasionally, I blog about it, because anything that's worth supporting with my money is worth supporting with my words as well.

If you'd like to know more about child sponsorship through Compassion, here's the link where you can see children in need of support. And if you already love Compassion and want to contact to their blogger network, here's the place to do it.

As for my kids, we pray for each of them - Jocelyn, Robbie, Zoe, and Joselin - each night. Because all four of them are worthy of - you guessed it - compassion (and love. and a family).

As is the child you see below.

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