Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Soccer Balls, Haiti, and Jack

A few months ago Jackson very resolutely came up to Jamy and stated, "I want to help the orphaners." 

After a lesson in accurate terms for children without mommies and daddies, Jamy put our six year old on the phone with our friend Trace at the Global Orphan Project. We know several of the guys who work there and admire the organizations' partnering with local churches both locally and globally to care for orphans. Trace told Jackson that some of the team was headed over to Haiti in a few weeks and that Jack could send a soccer ball, explaining that the kids there in one of their communities love to play futbol. 

That was all Jackson needed to hear to get the fire going in him. As soon as he got off the phone, he grabbed his piggy bank and asked if he could earn more money like he had over the Christmas season to buy a soccer ball for the kids in Haiti. But soon he wasn't content with just one ball.  And that's when we got his kindergarten class involved.

We sent a note to his classmates explaining the Global Orphan Project and Jackson's vision to purchase soccer balls to send to Haiti. We set up a little soccer ball bank on Mrs. Theiss' desk where kids faithfully brought in their hard earned change for a few weeks. They each wrote letters and drew pictures for other kids, living lives so different from them but who would understand drawings of rainbows and friends.

I loved watching Jack's excitement as we went shopping for the soccer balls. We ended up also purchasing sidewalk chalk and frisbees; colors carefully chosen by Jack who assured me that boys and girls love blue and green. When Jackson proudly handed over a bag full of change to pay and told the cashier who the toys were for, she teared up a little bit and patiently waited as Jack counted out every last penny.

This week, our friend IV from GO Project came and shared with Jackson's kindergarten class about his trip to Haiti. He showed them a map of where Haiti was, told them about the vision of the Global Orphan Project, and answered dozens of questions from little kinders about everything from if Haitians chew gum to what he meant when he said the big word organization (God bless him).  

He told them about the community in Hinche, Haiti where 32 children without mommies and daddies have people who take care of them and make sure they hear about Jesus. He shared how they have school outside on the dirt, dry their laundry in the sun, and love to play futbol- sometimes with balls made with crumpled paper and tape.  

And then he showed the pictures of the children.  

The kids smiled.

The kids cheered.

The kids got a glimpse into a life so different than their own. And they got a small glimpse of what living outside of themselves looks like.  

I'm praying this has done something to Jackson's heart.  That he remembers what it feels like to give sacrificially. And that this fire in him will keep burning to care deeply about others.

I'll pray that for his mama's heart as well.

Photos from Haiti courtesy of IV Whitman  


  1. That is the most fabulous thing I have heard in a while. I LOVE it. :)

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