One of the nicest cards I have ever received was from a friend in Ethiopia whose family adopted me during my time there. In the card he thanked me for loving his wife and kids. Loving his family was easy to do as they gave me a place to belong in a foreign country, far away from my own family. But the words in his card have stayed with me… an easy way to encourage a missionary family is to care for their kids. And now that I have a child of my own I can see what he means… when people  do special things for Sam, it blesses me too. One lady we know sends a birthday card to every missionary child listed in the prayer guide for our mission organisation. How sweet it is to open their card, filled with kind words and stickers or a birthday banner on Sam’s birthday. Another friend found the whole set of Thomas the Tank Engine books at the Op shop and sent them to us. My adoptive family in Ethiopia would get an email from one of their home churches in September asking for present ideas for Christmas. The list of present ideas would then be shared amongst the church members who would buy a present, wrap it, label it and then someone would post them in time for Christmas. Spoiling kids doesn’t need to be expensive…  Sam gets so excited about stickers, books, craft supplies (pipe cleaners, pom poms, coloured paper or glitter). For many children on the mission field something that is new is a great treat for them and a tremedous encouragement to their parents.

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