Sunday, January 17, 2010

A Time of Compassion

As moms, we often look for times when we can teach our kids about kindness and compassion. This week is one of those weeks. We learned with great sadness of the tragedy experienced by the people of Haiti. Our hearts go out to all the people affected by the earthquake, both the Haitians, the relief workers and all the families who have loved ones there.

I encourage you to gently talk with your kids about the earthquake and the challenges which are ahead for the Haitian people and relief workers. It may be a good idea to read some articles from the web or local newspaper to help your kids understand some of the facts. Be careful as you don’t want to instill fear in them, but simply offer a healthy understanding of the challenges. Be aware of your kid’s possible concerns if you are watching the television coverage, and consider limiting their exposure.

Interestingly in watching the news coverage, I noticed that many of the workers asked everyone to pray to God for help. Certainly at a time like this we all recognize our desperate need for God’s mercy, wisdom and care. The apostle Paul’s words kept resonating in my mind, “Pray without ceasing.” Let us all commit to continually pray for the people in this devastated country. Pray with your kids for the specific needs you read about each day in the newspaper. Pray for the relief workers, for their safety and their health. Pray for more provisions to get through to the people. Pray for the healing of the people and for the country. This is an opportunity to demonstrate compassion and care through our prayers for others.

We may not be able to go over to help, but we can help through giving donations. Even in this decision, I encourage you to pray as a family for the ways you are to give to help meet the needs of the people of Haiti. It is important for your kids to know that you carefully think about giving and that you actively give to those in need. Encourage them to participate as well. Personally, I have chosen to donate to World Vision. You can go to www.worldvision.org to find out how they are serving in Haiti and also to find out how you can donate. Prayerfully consider the ways God wants you to help.

Pray without ceasing. Never stop praying. Those words are a charge for us as we watch the relief efforts increase day by day. Pray with your kids, “Oh Lord, help these precious people of Haiti. Give them peace and strength. Help them to know you are their refuge. Help the relief workers. Give them wisdom and perseverance as they continue to be your hands and feet in this devastated country.”

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