We admire the remarkable generosity of our supporters. Our kids learn early on that everything we have at Roots & Wings is a blessing: gifts from others who sacrifice so that we can have this beautiful center filled with toys and materials for them to learn and play. Many of them could tell you stories of how we prayed together for God to meet a certain need – and shortly thereafter, it arrived.
They tell every new kid about young Cate from Canada, who visits us every year with gifts she requests for us in lieu of birthday presents for herself.
They are on the receiving end of endless generosity ever day. And we wonder, how can we teach our kids that same virtue?
How can we instill in them a heart of giving? How can we teach them not only how blessed they are, but how they can bless others?
How can we teach them empathy and to value compassion; to help them understand that we’ve ALL got something to give?
We can tell them the story of the widow’s offering a hundred times, but it will never be as real, as impactful, as giving them tangible experiences of their own.
As such, this past year we have been more intentional about looking for small ways, little meaningful acts, the kids can do for these truths to really sink in. And this Christmas, we had the opportunity to do something even bigger.
Our primary students were challenged to give of their spending money to collect a small fund for someone in need. So for four whole months, many of them chose to give up buying a snack at school or to do an extra chore at home to add to the savings.
They were beyond excited to discover that by Christmas, together they had saved almost $800 pesos (roughly $40 US dollars). We learned of a small old folks home in the city, and after a trip to our local superstore, they came loaded with gifts and groceries for its residents. (And cake. Because who doesn’t love cake?)
They wrote a list of conversation starters, packed up their costumes from their Christmas program performances and spent the morning blessing 20 elderly men and women who clapped and chatted and squeezed our little ones with such love and gratitude for their visit.
It was a special morning, and this short, but meaningful trip has no doubt sunk deep into their hearts and memories.
We hope to continue looking for fun ways to involve our children in giving.
We will continue to expose them to the needs of others and give them the the chance to learn firsthand that God can use them to bless others.
Because no matter what our situation in life, our time and our talents are tools – gifts God has given us – to share them, do good with them, and use them for His glory. And there is truly nothing more rewarding.