Compassion International is confronting the overwhelming issues that face children today.

By October 13, 2005

USA/International (MNN) — Poverty, famine, disease, war, disasters. All those things are tragic to anyone who experiences them, but those who pay the greatest price and suffer the most are children.

Wess Stafford, the president of Compassion International, has written a book entitled Too Small to Ignore: Why Children are the Next Big Thing, to address the pressing needs that confront children and the lack of investment there is into children’s lives.

Stafford hopes the book is a wake up call about the importance of children, “And then we begin to understand that while we all love them, and it’s rare to find anyone who really hates children, they aren’t anywhere near as important in the midst of what we do as they really need to be to find their place among us as really the heart of the Kingdom of God. Jesus said, “My Kingdom is made up of such as these.”

The book gives a glimpse into Stafford’s life and experiences, both as a missionary kid in Africa and as a child advocate today. Stafford concentrates on how children are often ignored in the world today, draws the reader back to what God intended and presents ways for the church to become more involved in being a “champion for children.”

Stafford says the goal of the book is to call the church to greater action: “The target is really the church. I’m really eager that the church come to understand the importance of children in the kingdom of God. But beyond that, to understand how strategically important they are to the church not only of tomorrow, which we often say, but the church of today, their place among us as men of women of God today.”

It’s an overwhelming issue, but something that can be addressed child by child, both in the U-S and abroad. Stafford says, “That’s how the world gets changed, as little ones like that are given the opportunity, to first of all to survive, but then to go on to reach their full potential, their calling, then the world begins to change.”

Through Compassion sponsorships, almost 690,000 children worldwide are given support and invested in as important. More sponsors are needed.

“We maintain that when a person sponsors a child, or any time a person reaches out to a child, it’s like throwing a pebble into a pond, and you can see the little splash but what you don’t see perhaps, is the ripples that go on and on and on, sometimes across generations. Every child’s spirit is like wet cement, and you can launch the life of a child with a single act of kindness, a single kind word, or you can destroy the life of a child with a single unkind word or single act of abuse. They are so fragile while they’re small.”

Stafford says, “They’re too small to ignore. If we understand that they are the next big thing, now is the time to minister to them, before it’s too late.”

The book releases next week, Tuesday, October 18th. You can order it online or find out more information for child sponsorship by going to the Compassion website. Follow the link above for contact information.

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