Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Compassion (the thing & the organization)

I preached on being a community of compassion last Sunday, finishing our Retro series on the first three chapters of the book of Acts. I was really challenged by the text about my vision (do I see with compassion?), my convictions (do I believe I have something to offer?), and my message (am I pointing others to Jesus?). We all show compassion in lots of ways, but one way that Barie and I show compassion to others is actually working through a ministry called Compassion.

Compassion is a ministry that partners sponsors from the US (and other developed countries) with kids in under-developed countries to provide food, medical attention, and education - all in the name of Christ. Compassion just passed the 1 million mark in the number of kids being sponsored around the world. Our family has sponsored Isaac (who lives in Peru) for about 6 years now, and he is now a teenager. We write to him regularly and get letters from him often.

Compassion publishes a magazine once a quarter that tells great stories about how others are showing compassion to people around the world. This month's magazine had a great article about Albert Pujoles, the all-star baseball player, who serves the poor in the Dominican Republic. It also has a great article about Mike Foster, who started a group called The Junky Car Club, to encourage people to drive cheaper, older cars so they could be more generous with those who need help. Check them both out and be encouraged.

Finally, take a second to watch Rob Bell's new Nooma video on why compassion and gracious living is so important to our personal, spiritual health. You can watch it for free online.

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