Friday, July 11, 2008

Lian's $16.02 goes a long way


Ever since the earthquake destroyed much of Sichuan, China, last month, Lian has asked on a weekly basis about what will happen to the kids whose houses were destroyed. She has used the analogy of God parting the Red Sea to talk about how God must have parted the earthquake so it didn't hit the kids in Gaoyou. It is hard to explain the unexplainable discrimination of a natural catastrophe to an adult, never mind a five year old.

I finally got the hint last week after she mentioned it again and this time I asked Lian if she would like to do something to help the children in Sichuan. She said "Yes!" I told her we could not travel there to help them, but maybe she could give some of her money that she has been saving in the bank. Again, an emphatic "Yes!" I asked her how much. Without even pausing she said, "$16.02."

Lian's "Auntie" Jen works for World Vision so we called to ask her if Lian could give her money to World Vision to help the children in Sichuan. In true Jen fashion, Jen orchestrated what I believe to be a truly transformational afternoon for our girls. I took Lian to the bank on Friday where she very confidently walked up to the bank teller and asked her for her $16.02. The banker smiled and said, "You must be going shopping." And Lian replied, "No. I am helping the kids in Sichuan, China."

We then went to World Vision's office to hand her money to someone who would send it to China. I wanted Lian to see where the money was going. Well, Jen, had an entire greeting party for us at the front door - Dean Owen , the director of Public Relations for World Vision, Karen from donations, Rachinda and Kristie from Acting on Aids Campaign. Just amazing. Lian felt like royalty (or at least mom did). Dean took us on a tour of World Vision's museum which highlights how World Vision is helping children around the world. Lian was able to see the packages that her money will help provide to the earthquake victims. Lian wrote a letter that we had translated in Chinese by her tutor and she was so excited to know that Karen would send the letter to a family in China.

Karen told Lian that her $16.02 would provide care packages (tent, lantern, dishes, candles, toiletries, blanket, and food) for four families. In the car later, Lian asked, “Momma, how many kids would $100.16 help?” I told her, “25.” “How many would $1000.60 help?” I told her, “250.” “Wow,” was her reply. Then later when Dano got home, the only thing she wanted to tell him about the time at World Vision was, “My $16 helped 4 kids!”

After we toured the museum, Dean thanked Lian for her gift and gave her a beautiful book on China. He told her he really wanted her to remember this special visit to World Vision. I know she will.

On the way home, I told Lian that God loves a cheerful giver. She just smiled. Dano and I always tell Lian that she has an incredible gift of "helps". She loves to help people. I want to have more of my daughter's heart.
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