Friday, January 14, 2011

The Needs Are Great

Yesterday was one hard day. Gracen was diagnosed with the flu on Wednesday and the only symptom she had was a high fever. Because of her little kidney condition, I have to take her to the doctor if she ever has a fever of 101 or higher. This is how we found the flu. I got Tamiflu for her and honestly, wasn't that concerned about the day or night or the rest of the week for that matter, because I figured she would recover quickly because we caught it quickly.

As bedtime approached, I knew she was getting worse and not better. She was burning up and just layed on me from afternoon until bedtime. She was fussy and cranky and developed this cough almost out of nowhere. I put her to bed and she might have slept 2 hours, and then we were pretty much up the rest of the night. By morning she was barking and wheezing, her nose was pouring, and she remained incredibly cranky. I called the doctor and we went in at 2:00. She was diagnosed with croup, given steroids, and we were sent home. By bedtime her cough seemed to be a little bit better and she slept all night.

Children can go from well to incredibly sick overnight. As I held Gracen on Wednesday for hours, and felt the heat radiating off of her little body, I became immediately grateful for pediatricians, medications, thermometers, etc. We take it for granted, don't we? In foreign countries, mothers watch their babies develop simply things like colds, that turn into flu, that turn into infections, that kill....and there is absolutely nothing they can do about it. What an incredibly hopeless feeling. As I held Gracen, I became more and more sad about all the mothers that have lost babies, all over the world, from very simple things, things that could have been treated, if they had access to medical care and the means to afford it. I could picture in my mind mothers holding babies who were burning up with fever, begging God for mercy.

I know God brought this to my mind because since reading the book Radical, by David Platt, I have thought a lot about poverty and the call for every single believer to get involved with the needs around the world. Gene and I have talked a lot about who we can help and what we can do. We just want to do SOMETHING, we want to do MORE, but we always feel powerless to make any kind of significant change. We tithe, we sponsor mission trips, we help families in need when we are made aware of the need, but there is always more that can be done. God has blessed us in so many ways, and we don't always want to be on the receiving end. We want to give. So, as I thought about all of this, we decided to sponsor a child from Haiti through Compassion International. It is the one year anniversary of the horrific earthquake/tsunami that struck the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere and there is still so much to be done there.

We involved Reagan and talked to her about what we are doing. We showed her a map of Haiti and pictures of the poverty there. We even let her pick the child we would sponsor. She picked Daniella, a 3 year old girl. As a family, we are going to pray for Daniella and her family every day, and for Haiti.

I want to encourage you to get involved with Compassion International as well. You can find the link to pick a Haitian child HERE. One neat thing I just noticed, when we signed up there were 1800 kids waiting to get sponsors and now there are 913 waiting. People are doing it and you can too.

Another very worthy organization that Gene and I give to is Cure International. They surgical heal medical conditions like club feet or cleft lips. Doctors provide their services and sponsors help with medical costs. After being in the hospital with Gracen, I became a little more sensitive to medical needs. God certainly uses everything we go through, doesn't He? You can check out their ministry HERE.

I want to encourage you to pray and ask God where He might want you to get involved, who He might want you to help. He wants us all to reach out beyond our little family and sacrifice our materialistic wish list. The needs are great and we can each make a difference!

Proverbs 21:13 "He who shuts his ear to the cry of the poor will also cry himself and not be answered."

That's a pretty clear call from scripture.

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