As well as practical care, our Compassion centres nurture the spiritual health of the children who attend. Caring for children holistically gives them the opportunity to grow in their faith. That faith gives them hope and resilience to face anything.
It was Jesus who said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”
There’s so much we can learn from children about faith.
Let’s meet three incredible Compassion sponsored children who show unshakable trust in our Lord and pray to Him in every circumstance.
“Nothing is impossible for God.” - Lynet, 12, UGANDA
“I began hearing people in the community saying that dad would die. I kept telling my sisters that we had to pray because God is able.”
Lynet was 12 years old when she heard the devastating news. Her father was ill and had been rushed to the hospital, leaving Lynet at the compound she shared with relatives.
“Aunt Patricia, the director at my Compassion centre, taught us that when you believe, nothing is impossible for God,” recalls Lynet.
“One day, my uncle came home [from the hospital] very discouraged. He said I needed to go and see my father and that I needed to pray.
“That day, I cried. The thought of losing my father was scary. My stepmother said God would heal him, but everybody had lost hope because Dad was too sick. They said he could not sit, walk, eat, or recognise people anymore.”
That night Lynet didn’t sleep. She prayed and read her Bible.
“I read Psalm 120:1, ‘I call on the Lord in my distress, and He answers me.’ I believed that when I shared my pain with God, He would answer me… I prayed to God that by the time I reached the hospital, Dad would be able to rise from his bed and have the strength to sit.
“As I prayed, the verse that came to me was Isaiah 41:10: ‘So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.’”
When a nervous Lynet and her family visited her father at the hospital, they were greeted with a beautiful sight.
“My dad was seated right there on the bed! I was so happy and praised the Lord in my heart. Dad smiled and reached out his hand to hold me by the shoulders. He said, “Omwishiki wangye wijja kundeba!” which means, “My beloved daughter, you have come to visit me!”
“When he recognised me, I knew that God was healing him. I kept telling him to trust God because nothing is impossible with Him. Dad said he believed because he knows that nothing is impossible with God.”
Lynet’s father was discharged from the hospital three weeks later.
For people who are praying faithfully and waiting for God’s answer, Lynet has this to say:
“God’s answers don’t always come quickly, but they are never late. I want people still waiting on God to continue praying and praising God and serving Him as they wait. He will answer them.”
“Don’t stop praying.” – Tivani, 11, INDONESIA
The sentiment is echoed by 11-year-old Tivani, who lives in South Sulawesi, Indonesia, with her father, sister, and grandmother. While Lynet’s prayer was answered quickly, Tivani learned there is power in persistence.
“For those of you who are still waiting for something, please don’t give up. Don’t stop praying. I prayed for almost five years, and God answered my prayers. I will keep praying forever because I need to pray for my family, my friends, and my tutor,” she says.
Tivani started praying for her own Bible when she was six years old.
“In my house, we have two Bibles, and I’m not always able to use them. I must share them with my parents, my sister, and my grandmother. The quality of the covers is not strong, and they easily tore because we were all using them, one after the other. They also only contained the New Testament. I wished I had the complete Bible, the Old and New Testaments,” Tivani explains.
“Every day, I prayed that one day my father would have enough money to buy a Bible for me. The price of the Bible I wanted was around IDR 150,000 (£8). My father needed time to save this amount of money.”
Yoga, Tivani’s father, works as a daily labourer. His income is limited. The family budget is tight. Tivani’s living situation also became more complicated when her mother abandoned the family early in 2021.
“My father has become quieter since then,” says Tivani.
“My prayer list is growing. Now, I pray for my father, so he will remain patient in taking care of me and my sister.
“I cry when I pray. I cry because I miss my mother. I cry because I know my father is feeling lonely. To comfort my father, I sit with him every morning as he drinks coffee before he goes to work. He always asks about my school and what I have learned at the Compassion centre.”
The answered prayer
During this painful time, Tivani has found comfort at her Compassion project.
“I love going to the Compassion centre because this is the place where I can share with my friends and my tutor. This is where I can think of other things besides family matters.
“My favourite thing about the centre is that my tutor always lends her ears to listen to my stories. She doesn’t only listen but always asks me to pray together to close our sharing sessions,” says Tivani.
Thanks to donations from people all around the world, Tivani’s Compassion centre was able to hold a Christmas celebration last year. It was there one of Tivani’s prayers was answered.
“My friends and I were so happy because our sponsor sent us gifts. But my happiness didn’t stop there! Our pastor handed me a Bible. I was shocked and could not believe it. God had answered my prayers when I wasn’t expecting it.
“I felt that God is so good to me. He gave me the Bible after I prayed for one for years. He gave me the Bible even when my father still had no money to afford it.
“I bring my Bible everywhere, to the school and the Compassion centre. I always put the Bible beside my bed. It has the Old and New Testaments. The black cover is solid and stronger than the old Bible.”
The Bible hardly leaves Tivani’s side.
“God is also good to me because though my mother has left us, my father still has the spirit to work and take care of me and my sister. God understands what I prayed for. He comforts me through my tutor and my friends at the centre.”
Compassion offers age appropriate Bibles to children who take part in Compassion's programme.
“I know that God is our provider.” – Obed, six, HONDURAS
In a rural community in Honduras, six-year-old Obed is worshipping and praising God with all his heart.
“You’re worthy of my praise, you’re my light and my salvation, the reason why I live is because you’re mighty and powerful, you’re strong and invincible, and there’s no one like you,” he sings.
Obed lives with his parents and two older sisters. His father is a construction worker and the sole provider for the family.
They struggle financially, but they have Compassion’s local church partner by their side. It’s there Obed learned to speak to God whenever he needed.
“Every night, I kneel by my bed, put my hands together, and pray before going to sleep. I ask God to bless my family, my friends, my sponsors, and the Compassion centre tutors because they’re always good to me,” explains Obed.
“I learned during Bible classes that no matter our age, when we pray to God, He is always listening.”
This faith came to the test when Obed’s father came home from work without pay.
“My father and my mother were really worried about the payment, and I could see the struggle on their faces as the days passed by. Together with my mother and sisters, we prayed before bedtime for the payment.”
A surprise visitor!
“A couple of days later, my father’s boss—who did not know where we lived—was looking for my father all over the community because he had something for him. When my father’s boss finally found out where we lived, he knocked on our door. We were surprised to see him as we did not expect his visit.
“He also told my father that he did not need to worry because his job was secure. He said that a new construction project was about to start, and he needed my father’s services. When my father opened the envelope from his boss with his payment, it contained extra money. We could not believe it.”
The family hugged each other and praised God for answering their prayers. Not only had He provided, but God also gave them more than they asked for.
“That was not the first time God has answered our prayers, and I know that He is our provider. He’s mighty and powerful.”
For all the children around the world, Obed has this to say:
“I want to share with other children my age that God answers our prayers when we talk to Him, worship Him, and read the Bible. My parents always encourage me and my sisters to connect with God no matter how young we are. I hope other children are encouraged to pray and worship God, too.”
To our amazing sponsors and supporters
Thank you! Our church partners wouldn’t be able to do much of what they do without your support. Not only is your partnership providing practical care, but it’s also giving children all over the world true hope. May their faith in God continue to grow, and may these children never know a day outside God’s immense love for them.
You must be logged in to post a comment.