Friday, November 26, 2010

On this Black Friday…

…I am thinking of all of the people dashing about, spending hundreds of dollars on “stuff”. I know it is called “Black Friday” because it is the day that stores make a lot of profit, but in my mind I see it as a dark day that celebrates materialism, indulgence and the idea that we need more, more, more.

Since we have come to know more about poverty in this world, from sponsoring through Compassion International, my perspective on “needs vs. wants” have changed so much. Ann Voskamp from A Holy Experience, shared some profound thoughts in this blog post, which have stuck with me since I read them.

“God gives the world enough of what it needs.

He just doesn’t distribute it.

We will have to share.”

So, on this Black Friday, will you share some light with a child that needs it?

Can you spare less than $10 a week to sponsor a child through Compassion International?



Amy D said...

Yes. :-)

Yesterday, Chad and I were going through the gifts that we have for our kids. I was amazed that with the exception of one kid, we are done. We barely spent a dime! Most of these gifts were more time involved than wallet involved.

Our whole family has gained a ton of perspective because of what has been given to us, and what we have given to others. We now know that our very happiness is not wrapped up in a box on Christmas.

Blessings to you. :-)

Jessica said...

Are you as depressed today as I am?

Think I'm going to go bake some cookies to take to our new neighbors to cheer myself up. And I should probably just stay away from facebook indefinitely. ;)

Doris said...

I am always amazed how many people really "buy into" (literally) the stuff retailers shove down our throats. The entire attitude of "mine, mine, mine" disgusts me. I am praising God right now because my college aged daughter just told me that instead of presents, if we wanted to give her money instead, she is planning on donating to her charity of choice, which happens to be Invisible Children (child soldiers in Uganda). If I had known at 19 what she does now, oh my...things could have been so different!

Junie said...

First, I wanted to say in response to Michelles post yesterday, that i think it is just wonderful how God worked in Nico's heart and how He also brought Sadie the dog back. That must have been a very happy Thanksgiving for you and your family Michelle. I'm totally new to this blogging thing so i don't even have a profile set up, but enjoy reading peoples comments. :) I agree with all of you about shopping for lots of "stuff." When i think about it, how my "stuff" do i really need ? A wonderful book i read was "The Treasure Principle" by Randy Alcorn. Has anybody else read it? It's a small book but really changes a persons thinking on materialsim. I would recommend it to anyone. I have so much to be thankful to God for !!

4littlefergusons said...

Just stumbled across your blog through compassion's website. We sponser to children one for 7 years now, and the other for 2. I am not nearly as good as you are about writing them, hurriedly writing an email once every few months and sending photos once a year....needless to say, I am CONVICTED! Both of our sponsered children are 14, and I am wondering what would be "cool" enough to send teens? Anyhow, love your blog. Thanks for all the great tips and ideas! I am determined to do better!

Michelle ~ Blogging from the Boonies said...

Amy, perspective is a wonderful thing. It isn't always easy to see things the way we do, but I know that it is good for us!

Jessica, no I am not depressed. I do find myself mulling it over and thinking about it a lot. It just keeps me motivated to keep praying, promoting and spreading the word. I'm still on a "finding Sadie, seeing Nico" buzz that would make depressing impossible!

Doris, your daughter sounds like quite a girl!! <3

Junie, thanks for sharing our excitement! I haven't heard of that book, but I will see if our interlibrary loan has it!

4littlefergusens: Welcome!! You've made my day with your comment. That is an example of why I do what I do and I am glad you've made a commitment to spend more time in your letter writing ministry!! Photos are treasured. Our teens also seem to like the geometric coloring sheets from Dover Publications. I know that the OurCompassion website has a group that is dedicated to sharing ideas for things to send to teens.

Julie (Dan) said...

I'm going to reply to your comment here so you see it. :)

My little Vestine in Rwanda actually signed her first name (starts with M and is really long... I am not even going to try to spell it as I don't have her picture in front of me.)
The packet & info on Compassion shows her name as Vestine but I'm not really sure that is what she uses. What project is your girl in? I wonder if there is a relation? M. is in 534.

Teena said...

Michelle, I blogged today about how my heart can not stop thinking of Maureen, our sponsored children and what Mandi saw in Africa. I am forever changed but do not know what to do with myself... so to speak.

for years now we have not bought much... one our budget is not able and two... we just didn't. I realized that this year I am doing it a little different. We are buying for ours ... and I did go shopping yesterday. Spent $$ at Lifeway but not much. But we are so into doing MORE for others, our sponsored children ... neighbors.. others that need it.

Was reading about the book Christmas Jars and how you put your loose changed in a jar and at Christmas you take it and place it on someone's doorstep with the little book. We have put money in a jar for a couple years now and we buy stuff out of the catalogs. This year I think we are going to give it to our Compassion Sponosored child's family.

thanks for writing.... thanks for sharing your heart.

faithlikemustard said...

Perspective is a wonderful thing. For many years, I felt as if I *deserved* piles of gifts at Christmas because that's what I saw all around me (even though my own family was not particularly huge gift-givers). Now, I really understand the difference between needs vs. wants, thank goodness! Life is so much more fulfilling since my attitude has changed.

I also thank God for the difference Compassion has made in the attitudes of my own children in this aspect. They are finally getting a world-view and seeing how America is really not like the rest of the world.

BTW, Teena: I recently read The Christmas Jar and started one, too!

Emily said...

OK, Michelle... not really related to this post, but... This is a little "matchbook" that you print out and fold and make look like a matchbook, but with picutres, etc. in it. Think this is something we could send, if we used ribbons or something to tie it together instead of brads?

I thought it was kind of cute and could show pictures of what winter is like here, or something.

Michelle ~ Blogging from the Boonies said...

Emily, that looks cute and from what I see, it looks like it would go through. Now, in the past I had heard that ribbon wouldn't go through. However, I did send ornaments with ribbon through the holes and I didn't hear that they were rejected. Maybe they pass if they are attached to something, just not sent alone?

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