Shawna’s Story(Insert pictures of Shawna with her kids as you see best)
I’ve always been surrounded by children I love children babysitting them, reading to them, feeding them, tucking them into beds... the innocence in their faces and demeanor is just the epitome of hope to me.
I visited Mexico shortly after graduating high school, and saw a filthy crying baby sitting on the corner of a crowded street. Her mother was begging for money, and just letting the baby wail beside her. I bent down and wiped the baby’s face and just hugged her for a minute, just hoping to soothe her. With a blank face and a serious tone, the mother asked “Cuanto?” meaning, how much would I pay her for a baby. Like seriously?!? My heart gushed and my immediate thought was to give her everything and anything I had to help her, but take her baby? How desperate she must’ve been. It broke my heart. My friend put her arm around me and we went back across the border, without a baby in my arms, but filled with a seriously weighted burden.
Something happened that day, something that I cannot explain except to say that my eyes were opened to something I couldn’t conceive ever to be possible. A mother willing to sell her baby. Her own flesh and blood. I couldn’t judge her. She wanted to give her baby a better life. It changed me to my core. It hurt my insides. I really struggled with the thought of wanting to help women and children who were in this situation every single day, but I didn’t feel I could bear to be the one witnessing it. It’s selfish, I know. But it’s true. It made me want to hold onto that part of my life, and not let God be in control. I was afraid that if I asked God to send me where He needed me (you know where there are so many starving and dirty children that I couldn’t possibly comfort each and every one) that He would send me to India or Africa where I would be surrounded by crying babies and helpless women what could I really do for them?
Over the next year I wrestled with this, and it haunted me in a good way. It was that something that I couldn’t compartmentalize. I was at the beach, sitting in my chair looking out at the ocean when I realized that it wasn’t about me or what I could do. It really was about what God would do and was I willing to help Him do it. And in that moment, I realized I was. I wanted to do whatever He called me to if that was holding crying babies in a third world country, building huts or schools I didn’t know, I just knew I wanted Him to know that I was willing.
Shortly after this happened, I met my future husband. I had no idea that he was the son of a missionary to India. I had no idea that his heart was tied to fulfilling the Great Commission. But God did. I often giggle and shake my head at the timing, because that struggle for me was very real and the answer was life changing. Visiting India was a heart impacting experience. I was overwhelmed by the need. The basic needs that weren’t met. Seeing poorly dressed young children running on the streets, when they could be at school. Looking at the countless numbers of filthy feet that I’d love to scrub clean in a bubble bath. The huts that were surrounded by garbage dumps and all that accompanies trash... it was an assault to my born in America senses. Surely people don’t really live like this today? But they do. They really, truly do. Sharing the Gospel message with these families and individuals is eternity changing. That’s our great commission. Right? And in addition to that what about really loving these people in a way that speaks to their everyday life? What about helping educate children? What about training women to help support their families in a respectable way? How in the world can I impact their lifestyles in a way that matters on a continuous and ongoing basis?
There are a lot of organizations within our reach to assist us in wanting to help. But with Free A Child, your purchase of jewelry will make such a difference. Not only does the jewelry impact the lives of these people, it also is a talking tool for us to share how we’ve aided them. As women, we love to share a great deal or find with Free A Child, you can share the great deal you received on jewelry and it’s purpose to benefit the women & children of India. When you slip the necklace around your neck each day, or clasp a bracelet on your arm, what a tremendous reminder to pray for the women & children that your purchase benefitted.
Free A Child is such an opportunity to sow seeds for a better quality of life on earth and an everlasting eternity. Make an empowering choice to touch the untouchable, and be the hands that assist who you cannot see. Your purchase will impact a generation, it’s just raw love in the most simple form. It’s love without boundaries or stipulations, it’s freedom. And, that’s what love is.