Monday, August 8, 2011

I'm gonna go to Africa

"when I grow up, and I'm going to help the people make them clothes, plant food, water, make houses for them," proclaimed my five year old as he came into my room from his nap. He continues the story with wanting to be a firefighter to help the people of Africa control fires, but that he needs to be a police man to help with crimes. However, he has to a hunter, too so that he can catch meat for them (they may not have a problem in some of areas of Africa with this). He drew a picture of the animal clothing he would make for them, "like God made for Adam and Eve."

            Making underwear

      Animal Clothing and Homes
I sit still listening to this, and I think to myself, "start praying for the missionary in him." I had been praying that he love, love the people that God love so much, and that he would care for the people that needed care. I wish I knew why Africa because talk around the house has been Peru, but he is stuck on Africa. He then states, "Mom, when I grow out of my clothes I will take them to the people in Africa because I know they need clothes." Again, I am silenced by this thought. Brilliant thought because I never thought in that light. A boy who makes a measly quarter or two on his chores, and he thinks of the things he has right now in his possession. I pray for the woman he marries in a whole new light, now. Our prayer at night with him would be that her parents would raise her to love God, but now it seems we may need to be more direct that she will embrace that love and that it be morphed to a love that loves the very least of these and want to serve them.

I tell Luk about how when we go to Peru in June/July that we can bring clothing and help them rebuild after their earthquake, but again he was insistent that it would be Africa that he would this. Again, I'm thrown for a loop over this new journey he has for Africa. I embrace the conversation. Compassion International asked a few days ago on Twitter, "At what age should children be exposed to the reality of extreme poverty?" My immediate response was, "Any Age!" Reson and I have been very open about poverty in our house. I can't say that Luk grasps it fully, but he gets portions of it. He knows that the people do without and that their is a lack of hope, but he doesn't "get it" get it because he hasn't seen it or experienced it. In that phrasing I guess I don't fully get it either. I have seen poverty in areas that we traveled to in Jamaica on our honeymoon, but I didn't get a chance to be engaged in it like my husband. So, I understand it, but I don't "get it." I want Luk to grow up getting it.
So, we are thriving to introduce it to him next summer. However, until that time comes we try to have those with the least in our home.

 Smith & Pataso on our family room wall

Lovely Compassion Child covering Luk's Christmas photo
She is right at the door as you walk in. I don't know anything about her, but that she is in need of a sponsor. I pray for her and I will probably never find out if she gets sponsored. I will still pray for her and our boys. I wonder what the Lord has in store for Luk's life (and Logan's), but I pray and hope that this desire does not burn out. It has been a wonderful gift for me to see him love people he doesn't even know. Is it ever too early to introduce poverty to your children? Is a child ever too young to live in poverty? The answer is no. Children are born into it every day, every second. I will not hold this as a secret from my children. Start now, and teach your children that they are blessed, and God has called them to bless others!

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