How much do the Compassion programs emphasize living a life of purity and integrity?

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In the past couple of years, my daughter and I have found a few of our sponsored or correspondence children on Facebook. The only one we have communicated with has been out of the program for several years, and, knowing Compassion' s policy on the issue, we would not friend or send messages to any currently sponsored children. The thing is that so far none of these kids seem to be living a God-honoring life. Though there may be occasional posts referring to God, salvation, or Scripture, there are also posts with very offensive language, suggestive pictures, and sometimes worse. I understand that the programs don't have control, or even knowledge, of what the kids do on social media, but are the programs teaching what the Bible says about living a life that pleases God? And do you have suggestions about what I could say in my letters to emphasize that becoming a Christian should involve turning away from sin and living a godly life, with God's help? As you can imagine, it is a shock and a huge let-down seeing your child involved in this kind of thing.
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Laura Allen

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Posted 6 years ago

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Karen

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I do believe the programs are teaching these children what the Bible says about living a life that is pleasing to God.  Just like so many of us have done our best to teach our children about God and living a life pleasing to Him, Compassion can only plant the seeds.  Just look at how many of the kids around you may have been brought up in church but then chose a different path for themselves.  Prayerfully, it will come to full fruition in these kids' lives at some point.  I can imagine how disappointed you are.  My own life is full of disappointment in the way my birth children have chosen paths that are dangerous and not pleasing to God.  But then again, I have sin in my own life that I struggle with and know God is not pleased with.  I include scripture verses in my children's letters when I write to them and then try to give a small example of how I apply that verse to my own life, or how they will benefit from applying the verse to their own life.  Praying for them and encouraging them is the best we can do.  The rest is up to God, and to them.  Without you, they may have no hope of hearing the truth at all.  Warmest wishes to you.  
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Emily

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Laura, I am sorry that you have found content on your children's Facebook pages that are offensive and do not reflect what our staff teach them at the project. This can be hard to see and I appreciate that you have not added or messaged any of your children while they are still in the program.

Our ministry is Christ centered and our prayer and goal is to raise each child up to be a Christian leader and a light in their community. Although children are not required to be Christians when being registered into our programs, we do not shy away from the gospel message and every child in our program receives a Bible and is taught about Jesus. Our staff care deeply for each of the children.  Part of pulling them out of the depths of poverty means they work hard to address areas of their lives that they see they are struggling, whether it be family issues, lack of self confidence, personal identity, rebellion, etc. Regrettably, often times these children grow up in environments and a home life that teach them opposite of what the Bible talks about. They do not see themselves as valued and treasured children of God and in turn, seek out attention and love in other ways that society has told them is okay. This is just another reason why your letters of encouragement and prayer for you children is so important. As they grow up in the program, our prayer is that the lies poverty has told them would grow dim and the truth that you encourage them with, would break those chains that are enslaving them.

Thank you so much for your continued support of each of these precious children! My advise to you would be to continue feeding love and hope into them through your letters; motivate them to continue striving for their education and to reach their goals. Encourage them to seek after Jesus and even ask how you can be praying for them; they may be very open to telling you circumstances in their lives that they feel desperate and lost. 
(Edited)
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Teresa Dawn

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I had a similar situation with one of my teen girls, and I prayed for her a lot.  In the past year I've noticed a huge improvement in what she posts.  While the older stuff is not removed, the new things she posts shows a MUCH different attitude and lifestyle :) So... prayer works, it might just take time :)
(That being said, she's still "my" child, so I can't friend her right now and see only her public posts, I don't know what she posts on her private page, but based on what I can see, she's working hard to live a life of faith and made a huge turn around :) )
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Laura Allen

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Thank you, Karen, Emily, and Teresa Dawn.  I will definitely be praying for these kids, and in my prayers I'll also be asking for guidance on what to say in my letters to them.  Part of the challenge is making them feel treasured and loved while also sharing truth from God's Word that says Christians should be different than the ungodly culture surrounding us. 
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Teresa Dawn

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I know that after seeing her posts (the not-so-great ones she used to post) I wrote her a letter about it (Not specifically, I didn't mention seeing her posts, I just encouraged her a bit in how God wants us to live.)

She wrote back: "I love your advice and counselling for they are so constructive to me and it is so comforting to me because it raises my faith."

I wish I could tell you what I wrote, but I can't remember now, it was awhile back.  But I know I prayed about it a lot first and wrote what God wanted me too.  I'm glad she appreciated the honesty :)  She really is a very sweet young lady who went through a bad spell and seems to have come through :)
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Laura Allen

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I wish I could read what you wrote, Teresa Dawn!  Thank you for your encouragement-- I need it & appreciate it!  <3
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Karen

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You can encourage them by giving examples.  Perhaps tell them about a "niece" or "daughter" who was struggling with a temptation (whatever issue you want to address) and then you can share the scripture verses that you shared with your "niece" or "daughter" to help her get a Godly perspective on the issue at hand.  I try to give examples of how a scripture verse might apply to me personally and then how it might apply to them.  
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Laura Allen

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Thank you, Karen.  Good idea!

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