Our Story – Recently we made a visit to our sponsored children in Rwanda with Compassion International. It was an amazing visit. If you are a sponsor with Compassion International, I would suggest that your experience is not complete without a visit to the child’s home.
During the visit, we had the opportunity to worship with the sponsoring church and to visit the homes of Jean Baptiste and Joseph. They live in nearby villages in the mountains of the Western Province of Rwanda. We traveled a bit by car and then had to walk to the village. The families were very hospitable and welcomed us into their homes with lots of dancing and singing followed by prayer. What an opportunity it was to pray with Christians in a part of the world so different than ours.
The experience demonstrated the importance of unity of the Spirit. Emmanuel, the father of Joseph, said to us that our desire to visit his home made him feel valuable. What a remarkable example of what the Lord can do when we are obedient to Him! Emmanuel said that he was honored that we were willing to come into his home even though it only had a dirt floor.Later in the week, Josh and I were talking and praying about what we could do to serve the Lord. We wanted to do something that would not create dependence upon us. We wanted to do something that would have only upside impact, no unintended consequences.
I was reminded of a story about a well-intentioned missionary who noticed that the people he was serving had worn-out shoes. He thought that it would be easy for him to raise enough money to buy everyone high-quality shoes, something needed especially with the number of hours they spent on their feet. During his next trip to the region, he was excited to give them his gifts, and they were excited to receive them. All but one villager: the cobbler. You see, he had no more business and needing to feed his family, he packed up his tools and headed for another village. A year later, the shoes began to weather under harsh use. But . . . there was no cobbler to repair or replace their worn-out shoes. The well-intentioned missionary created a much worse situation than the one he was trying to solve. They were now dependent upon him to bring more shoes because there was no one locally to fill the need.
We wanted to help in a way that did not remove the value of those providing locally. God answered our prayers when we remembered the words of Joseph’s father, Emmanuel. Dirt floors are not only important to self-esteem, but they are the source of significant respiratory disease. Young children lose their brothers and sisters to pneumonia, diarrhea, and asthma at an alarming rate (over 2 million each year).
What if we provided concrete floors to those who need them? That is how Foundations for Christ, Inc. was established. Our true north is to eradicate disease caused by the parasites stirred up in the dust of dirt floors by providing a protective barrier of concrete. For the modest sum of $150 you can help a family in need and play a vital role in eliminating dirt floors from African villages. Join us in our effort by doing your part in the body of Christ!