I went to bed at 10:30 last night, but I couldn't sleep. My mind and heart were too full of images and stories from the Compassion Bloggers live video chat.

If you haven't heard, an awesome team of bloggers is in El Salvador this week, witnessing firsthand the miracle that is Compassion child sponsorship. You can read a few of their impressions here (via Molly from ThePipers) or here (via Kelly's Korner) or check out the really fun story about Shaun Grove's circle of life here.

I have to tell you, these trips pump me up. Corey and I have been Compassion sponsors since 2006; we first sponsored Karla (who lives in El Salvador, not so ironically) because we she is almost the same age as Natalie, and we wanted Natalie to grow up with a deep awareness of poverty, compassion and our responsibility as Christ followers.

So Compassion wasn't new to me when Shaun led the first bloggers trip to Uganda back in 2008. But the stories that came back -- the pictures -- the videos. I absolutely fell head over heels in love with an organization I already respected.

It changed me to the extent that I scheduled Shaun (and his sidekick, Ben) to come speak in chapel last year at my alma mater. (Did you know he does that for free? You can schedule him to come to your college, church or annual lutefisk meeting here.) That week, I spent as much time as possible over at Northwestern, working the Compassion table and generally trying not to sob when I talked to the college students about how child sponsorship changes the life of a child across the world.

After Shaun spoke in chapel on Friday, more than 150 kids were sponsored. And I was flying high.

(You can read Shaun's account of the day here, including the hysterical practical joke he played on an unsuspecting student during his evening concert. I won't ruin the story, but I would advise that you go to the potty before you go to any of Shaun's concerts. 'Nuff said.)

I was so excited to think about all those kids being rescued from poverty -- and I was equally excited to think about how the college students were going to be changed by their relationship with these children.

I remember saying to Shaun, "Man, this is addicting!"

He laughed. "Why do you think I do this?"

Now, I know Shaun doesn't just do this because it's fun and exciting to see God work close-up. (Although I will quote a little Beth Moore here and say, "There's no high like The Most High.") There are countless reasons he speaks and sings on behalf of Compassion, just like there are countless reasons I am now an official advocate for Compassion.

Actually, there are about 1,000,000 reasons.

If you aren't already, I implore you to add yourself to that list. You can sponsor a child right now, sitting at your computer, even if you're wearing your pajamas, even if you're listening to rock-and-roll music. (Maybe especially if you're in your pajamas listening to rock-and-roll music.) It only costs $38 a month, which is nothing, even in this economy. It's a new shirt for you, maybe a meal out, a date night, a few Starbucks a month. To a child, it's a new life.

And -- here's the cool thing -- it will be for you, too.

If you have any questions about Compassion or child sponsorship, please let me know. I'd be honored to get you some answers.


  1. Awesome post, Kelly! I love Compassion. I can't visit their website or read profiles or blogger stories without getting choked up. And theirs is one of the few ministry "magazines" that I read cover-to-cover when it comes.

    We asked my mom to sponsor a child as her Christmas gift to us starting this year (and for years to come, obviously). We've requested this for several years, but I think this year she might actually do it. We currently sponsor one child, and we plan on adding one for each child of our own (so another should be up in January!).

  2. we have a similar thing going on in feels good to help :)

  3. Amen.

    And although our annual lutefisk celebration has passed (October 16th for future reference), Osborne Family Lefse Week is coming up. I'll have to see if Shaun is available.