Good morning, friends!
The focus of our post today is to highlight the relationships between children and their sponsors who live overseas or in different countries. Not everyone has the unimaginable blessing of biological children in their lives; however, children (whether biological or not) can always be a blessing in our lives. The hubs and I are sharing our story today in this little blog post, and we hope it encourages and inspires you.
It’s 2017, we’ve been married for 2 and a half years, and we have not been blessed with children of our own yet. And while we would love to add little kiddos to our family in the future, ultimately we don’t know what our future holds for us. We are seeking to be both patient and prepared in the best way possible, and during this married with no kids phase of our lives, we have been blessed to share a beautiful relationship with a child in Nicaragua.
We met Hassel in 2015 during a missions trip with World Missions Outreach. I had been going on trips with this organizations for about 3 years, and I had heard a lot about their sponsorship program. They’ve developed a school on their property where children in the surrounding communities and villages can go and earn an private Christian education. Over the years, I had seen the benefits of kids going through school at WMO, but I wasn’t quite ready to become a sponsor just yet. Before our trip in December 2015, the hubs and I started praying separately. My prayer was very direct – that God would lead us to a child whom we could sponsor. That might sound a little crazy if you’ve been on a trip or followed our journey, and I say that because God led us to connect with about 1,500 kids on that trip. However, we were not led to sponsor all of those children. I prayed specifically that God would show us exactly who He wanted us to sponsor. Meanwhile, the Hubs was praying, asking God for guidance and an opportunity to bless others with the things God had already blessed us with. Our prayers were similar, and even though one was more direct than the other… They were the same.
During our trip, I started to share with the Hubs what I was praying for, and he immediately shared that he had been praying for something similar. We talked about what it meant to sponsor a child, and we agreed that this was a really important decision that we should make together. That’s when our prayers became one, and we started praying and asking God to point us in the right direction as a couple.
I’ll never forget the moment my eyes met Hassel’s. We were in a chapel service at her school, and the team that the Hubs and I had brought with us were leading the service. One of our pastors was praying over all the students, asking specifically for God to heal their physical ailments and to heal their family members. That’s when I looked over to her row and saw Hassel’s head buried in her jacket. She was sobbing, almost uncontrollably. I didn’t know her, so I was hesitant to go over and talk with her. I didn’t want to embarrass her, but as time went by and she continued to weep, my heart started breaking for her. I had no idea what was going on for her, but I felt a strong push to go and speak with her. We pulled her aside to give her some privacy and tried to console her. It’s was really clear, pretty fast that she wasn’t interested in sharing what was going, so I just started to pray. I didn’t need to know her to be able to pray for her. I just needed to pray.
After the service, I found her again, and with the help of our close friend who was able to translate for us, she started to share her story. She told me of the trials she had experienced and expressed that she didn’t have a sponsor. I had been to the school many times before and had never seen her, and she explained that it was because she was a new student with WMO. After some time went by, I found the Hubs and told him that I had met the child whom we were meant to sponsor. Without any hesitation, he said Okay and agreed that we would sponsor her.
Since meeting Hassel in 2015, the Hubs and I have developed a deep love and compassion for her. We’ve only seen her once since then, but through WMO’s online communication program, we are able to communicate with her often. She isn’t just a girl in another country who we send money to for sponsorship. She’s a part of our family. We pray for her all the time, and we are slowly and steadily developing a relationship with her and her family.
Christmas in 2016 with Hassel and Mercedes (her younger sister)
Thanks to WMO, we’re able to visit her whenever we want.God opened the door for us to meet her, and they are standing there keeping it opened. Every couple of months, they come up with a new way for us to connect with Hassel, and it’s absolutely incredible. Just this past week, my mom decided to sponsor Hassel’s sister, Mercedes. May our family continue to grow. ❤
I had no idea that God would change our lives through this opportunity. I only imagined that He would use us to change hers. O how I was wrong – I feel that He has used her to change our lives even more than we have helped to change hers. She’s becoming a part of our everyday experiences. When we’re out shopping and see a cute top that would fit a 16 year old girl, we purchase it and add it to the next package we plan to send her. When Christmas and Valentine’s day come around, we send her messages and celebrate with her. It’s such a unique relationship, one built on faith, google translator, and ultimately the love that God has given us to share with each other. It’s so strange now when people ask us if we have kids because technically we don’t, but we kinda do at the same time. We have Hassel, and she’s more than enough for us.
If you’re at a point in your life where you feel you have a little extra give, or you’re just looking for opportunities to share God’s love, this is a good resource for you. We’ve been sponsoring Hassel for a little over a year now, and the lengths that WMO goes to in order to increase our relationship with her amazes us. Just the other day, the founder’s granddaughter (also my bff) sent me a message letting me know that Hassel’s sponsor page had been updated. The Hubs and I logged on and saw all of these new photos of her in school and new information about her like her favorite color, what she wants to be when she grows up, etc. I can’t speak for other organizations, but I can speak for WMO when I say they get it. They totally get the point of sponsorship. It’s not about getting money to fund the school or cover costs here and there. It’s about developing relationships between a child and their sponsor to better lives, create incredible opportunities, and to change the cycle of poverty.
We are forever grateful for the opportunity which they have fostered for us to develop this beautiful connection with Hassel and with God.
– the Wife