It’s important to give of yourself. It’s important for a family to give together. But what do you do when it seems like you have nothing left to give?
We do not have a lot of money. Actually, this week I’m scrambling for grocery money. Need vs. want is a constant question at our house. But that’s ok. I’m trying to lift my business off the ground to try and alleviate some of the pressure, and we have peace about what brought us here. Leaving work and coming home was the best thing I could have done for my mental state, and for our family. But I still want to give charitably. We have a roof, and food, and cars, and jobs, and medical insurance. Sure, it’s old, leaky, second hand, store brand, paid through the nose for – but it’s a LOT more than a log of people have. Frankly, we’re blessed. So, we scrape together a few bucks a month and sponsor a child through Compassion International. I chose this organization on purpose for a few reasons. I first became aware of them through Shannon’s blog, Rocks in my Dryer. She went to Africa to see Compassion in action. They are Christian, which is important to me and my faith. And when you are sponsoring a child – you really are sponsoring that child. In other words, if you don’t give, they get put back on the list. You see, i had seen other organizations where you “sponsor a child” but really, your money is put in a pool to help. I didn’t want that. I wanted the face sent to me to be the actual face of the child I’m helping. I need that accountability. I want to see the changes happen. Elizabeth is our child. She’s in school now. Because we – through Compassion – put her there. That’s an amazing thought to me. From the research I did, and first person (Shannon and other bloggers) experience, it seemed to me to be a reputable, faith-based, truly helpful organization.
As an aside – I whole-heartedly reccommend CityTeam Ministries. While I cannot give to both organizations right now, I can tell you first hand that they are reputable, accountable, honest, and hardworking. I used to work in the administrative offices in the HR department, so I got to see the good, bad, and ugly. When asked by family and friends, I always recommend them.
Some people tell me I should volunteer. While I sometimes volunteer for my kids’ school – I don’t charitably volunteer. I’m at a season in my life where I have to take care of my children, and all that goes with their needs (they’re both special needs kids.) In addition to that, we live next door to my elderly sick parents, and help them. So for now – that’s all the caretaking I can muster. And really? That’s enough. I only want to volunteer if I feel pressed to on my heart, and that’s not a place I’m at right now.
But give of yourself, somehow. Unless you’re currently the recipient, there’s something. Anything helps. If you’re strapped for cash to give – perhaps you can save spare change in a jar. Those pennies add up. If you’re at a place in your life where you can give of yourself and feel called – do it. It’s important to remember that as bad as it gets… Someone is probably worse off.
From January 12 through February 28, for every UPC from a Quaker Oatmeal hot cereal product families enter at www.startwithsubstance.com, Quaker will donate one bowl of oatmeal to Share Our Strength, a childhood hunger organization. You’ll need to be a Facebook member to participate.