Hands Of Hope

We love Florence, our little girl from Zimbabwe, who we sponsor each month through World Vision. {If you're looking for an easy way to get your kids involved in helping others, check out this opportunity here.}

Just yesterday Maddie got a sweet letter from Florence. {It's actually a couple weeks ago now -I started this post awhile back.} The letter had a drawing {which Maddie had asked for in a previous letter she sent to Florence} and also told a little bit about what Florence was up to. But here's what struck Maddie.

Maddie: "Mom, Florence called me sister in her letter. What do you think she means?"

Me: "Well, think of what you're doing for her. You're providing her with food and clothing and education and she's learning about Jesus because of you. So if I had to take a guess, I'd say she called you sister because she thinks of you as family. You're like a sister to her, because family takes care of family. Even though she's never met you, because you're loving her and caring for her, she sees you as a sister."

Maddie: {after a lengthy pause, tilted head, looking off in the distance, pondering all of that) "Wow. SO I have a sister after all. I have a sister! I haven't met her but she IS my sister. I've always wanted a sister and now I have one."

A little while later Maddie piped up from the back of the mini-mini, saying that she felt bad because she had a sister overseas but Jackson didn't have a brother overseas.

And this is where her little entrepreneurial slash compassionate heart went wild. She basically spelled out her business plan for her new business in about 1 minute.

Maddie: "Okay, so I think what I'll do is sell some of the things I knit. Aunt Denise bought a headband so maybe others would buy stuff, too. And then, whatever money I raise we can use to give to a boy that is Jackson's age. And Jackson, you can draw pictures to sell, too."

Jackson: "Okay."

Maddie: "Mom, do you think $50 is enough?"

Me: "I think that's a great amount, Maddie."

Maddie: "No, I think it needs to be $100."

Me: "Sounds perfect, Maddie. Maybe we can set up an Etsy store for you and you can start your own blog where you can tell others about helping others. You'll have to come up with a name."

Maddie: "Oh, okay. How about, ummm. I don't know."

Me: "We can certainly take some time to think about that. Now we'll have to do a photo shoot of you so that people know who you are for your business. And we'll have to take good pictures of the things you're going to make so that people know what they're buying."

And on and on it went for the rest of the way home. It's like she caught the vision. You know the one - the one where we all say that one person can make a difference but most don't believe that one person can make a difference. But in our family, we do believe that one can make a difference and we've been singing that song for years now. Boy, does it feel grand to see and hear her sing that song. She gets it and that is SO rewarding as a parent.

I love Maddie's heart. I mean, that girl, for as many days as she drives me around the bend and back again crazy, has this little heart to help others that desperately need help. She really would give the shirt off her back if someone needed it. She is moved by videos that show kids in desperation. She WANTS to help.

And so, the last couple of weeks we've been doing some work getting photos done and setting up her Etsy account {it's a place where people can sell their handmade goods online}. Her Etsy account is
http://www.etsy.com/people/handsofhopeforkids so feel free to go check it out.

She's also beginning her own blog {http://handsofhopeforkids.blogspot.com/} to document her journey of giving hope to kids that need help. {This is also my sneaky way of developing her creative writing skills. Shhh. Don't tell.}

Anyway, I hope you'll check out her work. She does custom orders and custom colors so if you see something you like, or have another idea of something she could knit, let us know.

Our little Sweet Sweets is just that; as sweet as could possibly be and I have no doubt that this girl WILL change the world, one kid at a time!


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