International (MNN) — You see pictures of poor children all the time–on TV, on ministry Web sites, even on our site here at Mission Network News. As you look at those photos, have you ever thought, "I wonder what that child is thinking right now"?
For the last seven years, Compassion International has been giving people an inside look into the thoughts of impoverished children worldwide through a radio program called "Speak Up With Compassion."
Wess Stafford, president of Compassion and host of the one-minute radio broadcast, says the program focuses on "really giving children a voice, making sure that people who make decisions about children–be they parents, teachers, pastors, mission executives–understand the importance of children."
The short broadcast features Compassion-assisted children from all over.
"We have correspondents across the world with Compassion in all of our 26 countries," explains Stafford. "They have been gathering questions that the children would ask the Lord if they had the chance to ask [Him]. Some of them are pretty funny: ‘What were you thinking with the long neck on that giraffe?' Some of them are incredibly profound: ‘Why did my father leave us?'"
The listening experience goes like this: a Compassion child asks his question, which is subtly translated into English. Next, Stafford responds to the question. "We speak to whatever is the issue which that child raised," says Stafford. Then Stafford addresses other issues specific to the child, the area in which he lives, or struggles that children living in poverty or broken homes face daily.
Ultimately, "Speak Up With Compassion" encourages listeners to reach out to children nearby or across the globe.
"If God puts a child in your life for as little as 60 seconds, you have the chance to maybe be the one who says the right thing or does the right thing that launches that child's life," notes Stafford. He hopes the short programs inspire parents, grandparents, teachers, and more to be inspired to speak truth into children's lives after hearing the broadcast.
In a full-length interview with MNN, Stafford reflects on some specific ways the Lord has used the truth Compassion speaks to inspire kids to become pastors, and even senators. Listen to the interview here.
Compassion constantly loves on kids, encouraging them to reach out to Christ. "Speak Up With Compassion" invites you to do the same thing. Check with your local radio station to see when the program runs. If it's not airing yet, suggest that the station begins playing it, helping more children worldwide to be reached with the love of the Savior.