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It’s No Sacrifice

As an employee of a large insurance company I get to deal with and process many thousands of pounds each day. Naturally, I can never switch off the need to know where every single penny I am responsible for goes.

The same goes for my colleagues at work. I was chatting to a mate the other day about Emanuel my sponsored child and about going to Brazil to see him. I talked for 20 minutes. I only stopped when I realised that he had been writing down all the things he could buy with £21 a month.

I asked what he was doing and he said, “You freely give that much away to some charity?”

“Of course,” I replied. He was genuinely shocked. He got a phone call which broke the discussion up, but whilst on the phone he handed me his list which he had titled ‘fun things Keith does not want’. Then he drew one of those smiley faces with a wink ;)

I suppose it does seem like a lot of money considering all the other charities out there, but that list really made me think about the things we consider necessary for a comfortable life against all the things my sponsored child needs just to live.

Below is some of the list he wrote out and what I scribbled to the side of each one before I handed it back to him.

“Fun things Keith does not want      

(1) A Chinese take out @ £7.00

(2) Magazine subscription @ £4.50

(3) Decent aftershave (you need some mate) £30 over 6months = £5.00

(4) Cinema with mates £8.00″

 

Things Emanuel can now have

(1) A nutritious supplemented diet three times a week

(2) A structured education programme that compliments his school work

(3) Clean water, hygiene supplies and regular health checkups

(4) A safe environment to play and develop social skills with friends”

 

 

The list is already over £21 a month and that was not even half of the ‘fun’ suggestions on there!

Similarly, there are hundreds of other reasons I easily could have listed as to why I sponsor a child through Compassion.

The main reason I chose to sponsor through Compassion is because of the relevant and practical display of God’s love that the projects provide. I know that that my sponsored child has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ because he writes to me and tells me so and I get to write back to tell him I love him too.

I used to think that sponsorship was a sacrifice and that it should feel like it too. The reality however is that with a couple of very small lifestyle adjustments we can make a significant difference in the life of a child in poverty.

There are loads of things I could do with £21 a month, but there really is only one thing I would want to do with it. And Let’s be honest, considering everything that £21 covers, it really is no sacrifice at all.

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8 Responses to It’s No Sacrifice

  1. Michelle ~ Blogging from the Boonies 17/04/2012 at 11:38 am #

    Wonderful post, Keith. Perspective is everything, really. Living how we live, don’t we really already have “enough”?

    • Keith Riley-Whittingham
      Keith Riley-Whittingham 17/04/2012 at 12:27 pm #

      Thanks Michelle, your so right too. We have more than enough. We really could make a massive dent in poverty if we all just switched our spending habits a little bit.

  2. Karen 17/04/2012 at 12:55 pm #

    having recently been made redundant and living on jsa,i did worry i might have to give up my sponsorship,but so far i’m coping. . Alis my little girl in Nicaragua has it much harder than i do,and i know it’s making a difference to her life £21 a month isn’t going to vastly improve mine.

    • Keith Riley-Whittingham
      Keith Riley-Whittingham 17/04/2012 at 8:35 pm #

      It is difficult – I started sponsoring when my wife and I lived off only my income, i love how when we remain obedient to God in our finances he really comes through and looks after us. Luke 6:38

  3. Nicola Collison 17/04/2012 at 3:20 pm #

    Yep, its definatley worth it. It is a sacrifice and a struggle to me, I live off student finance which is not much at all, but God has always provided and it will make a heck of a lot more differnce to my little girl whom I sponsor than it will to me.

    • Keith Riley-Whittingham
      Keith Riley-Whittingham 17/04/2012 at 8:25 pm #

      Hi Nicola, I know loads of students that are trying to work out how to make sponsorship work in their finances, have you ant tips for them? Where do you make cut backs in order to sponsor your child?

  4. Nicola Collison 10/05/2012 at 1:42 pm #

    Hi Keith. Well, where do I start? I guess the biggest tip would be just not to touch that money, and always put it to one side. I don t drink or smoke, I rarely go out, and just to budget really, and see friends in each others houses rather than spending money to go out.I make sure I prioritse, so rent, food, bills, money to get to church each week, and sponsorship money are non negotiable. Just be careful with your money. Also, try to set aside a samll amount of money each week, so you have enough money at the end of the month for sponsorship. Try also to find a part time job (very difficult if u r at uni, but not impossible). Thats all I can advise really, it just seems to work.

  5. Keith Riley-Whittingham
    Keith Riley-Whittingham 10/05/2012 at 6:32 pm #

    Wow that’s great Nicola, You have a great attitude towards this. I’m going to show my friends this, to prove that it’s not impossible!

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