If you have looked around my blog you may have noticed in the side bar that I mentioned I donate 10% of all of my sitting fees to the Shelter of Love Center in Kampng Thom, Cambodia. So here is a note I wrote on Facebook on November 5, 2010 explaining a little about this AMAZING place...
This is a long note, but stick with me, I promise it is worth it.
I received a letter the other day from a lady half way around the world in Cambodia. I havent seen her face in almost a year and half but I can see it in my mind just as clear as if she had just walked out of the room 5 minutes ago. Her name is Pheara, and her and her husband live at the Shelter of Love Center in Kompong Thom, Cambodia. This is a place that has been on my heart since I got on a plane July 30, 2009 to head back to the USA. I have been trying to think of ways I could help them in any way I could. After I read the letter from Pheara, and looked at the sweet gifts she had sent me, I noticed another envelope with the Shelter of Love stamped on the front. In it was this letter...
Please take a minute to be encouraged by the story of Sok Nye, a ten year old girl, living under a piece of plastic behind a market in Kompng Thom town with her mentally limited mother who has tuberculosis. Sok Nye never knew her father, and never had the privilege of attending school. Her daily life consisted of walking around town with a bag, collecting recyclables. The police contacted the Shelter of Love Center to find her a secure place to live. Today Sok Nye is doing adequately well in school and is in 5th grade. She has accepted Christ as her Savior and hearts rejoiced when she read a Bible passage for the Sunday worship service. If it were not for the provision of the Shelter of Love Center, Sok Nye would still be an illiterate street child, easliy picked up and forced into teen prostitution.
We speak of this to shed light on how the Shelter of Love Center is an example of God's work in unexpected and wonderful ways. The story of how the Shelter of Love Center began is as amazing as Sok Nye's story. It started with Sue Singleton, living in North Carolina with her husband, who was tragically killed by a drunken driver. Some time later, Sue, already in her 60s, knew that God was calling her to serve in foreign missions. She was led to Cambodia through the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. Her major work has been teaching English to students, with the primary goal of evangelism.
There was more to the letter but this is the part that made me sit down and really think. This isnt some child on a TV screen that you arent sure if you money will ever get to them... to me this is a child that I have seen with my own two eyes and have hugged and loved on in God's name. This is a child that may not even remember my face, but I remember hers, and all of those of each child at the Shelter of Love. And this isnt some celebrity on TV asking you to send money to a place that may not even exist. This is a lady who doesnt ask for much, and has devoted her life to teaching Cambodians about Christ. After I read the letter I started thinking about what I could do to help these sweet children and this amazing place.
And finally it hit me. God has given me a talent to be able to look through the lense of a camera and see the magnificent art that he created with a different eye than others. He has given me the ability to capture moments in time for others to hold on to forver. From now until December 2011(and maybe longer) I will donate 10% of all sitting fees to the Shelter of Love. Its not much but did you know that $1 can feed a child for a day in Cambodia? I am not asking or begging you for money. If you feel you would like to donate to the Shelter of Love but you do not want to schedule a photo session, let me know and we can make it happen.
If you have made it to this point, I thank you for sticking with me through this long note, and I hope that the Shelter of Love Center now has a special place in you heart like it always will in mine.
"Look at the nations and watch— and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told."