One of the hardest challenges a family could endure is childhood cancer. I should know; I am a pediatric cancer survivor!
I understand firsthand the challenges endured by families when they have a family member in the hospital, going through treatment. The child receiving treatment is not the only one affected. It is a hard and emotional time for both the child and the people who love them.
In the past, I have raised funds, biked miles, etc. for the cause of pediatric cancer. But, I felt God lead me to do something more. I prayed about it and did some research. I read something by Charles Stanley that strengthened my desire to do something important.
“A follower’s life is summed up in the phrase complete obedience. In fact, Jesus defined true Christians as those who prove their love for Him by keeping His word (John 14:23). When it comes to obeying God, there are really only two responses: ‘I will’ or ‘I won’t.’ It’s tempting to say, ‘I will, but …’ as some of Jesus’ would-be disciples did, but that’s a roundabout way of saying no. Followers remain faithful to the Lord’s plan whether doing so is easy or hard. Not only that, but they proclaim Him in both blessing and calamity, and go even when they don’t like where He leads.
“Followers pursue the Lord because they know that the reward is a deeper, more passionate relationship with Him. They are not just waiting to spend eternity with God in heaven. They realize that eternity begins now, as they accompany Him on the righteous path He has set before them.”
– Excerpt from Intouch Ministries. Charles Stanley, Understanding Your Call
Mama Love was born from my passion to help children and their families, like mine, who have dealt the difficult blow of pediatric cancer. I realized that God placed a detour on my path, something that tested me and my family. I will forever be changed by my past, but it laid out a purpose for my future. I have a testimony I must share, to strengthen other children and their families dealing with their own detours in life.
Along with two of my running friends, Mama Love meets as a group of ladies, who have a heart to help, bless and love on others. We collect items and put together activity kits for children and their family to enjoy while they are in the hospital. We gather in fellowship and assemble kits with easy to buy items, usually $1-5 per item. We love spending time putting together these kits, because we love what we are doing, we love spending time together, and using our gifts. In the end, we celebrate by sharing a potluck meal.
I signed up Mama Love to be a Champion for Children at Lucille Packard Children’s Hospital, where I received some of my cancer treatments. My calling is to bless children and families going through cancer treatment, but these bags also bless children and families going through a variety of treatments. Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital treats children, but along with these children, siblings and parents are also blessed by these items.
Items included in the activity kits include:
- Coloring books/crayons or colored pencils
- Journals (for all ages)
- Word Searches
- Small, stuffed animals (size of a beanie baby)
Items can be purchased from stores like, Oriental Trading Company, Marshalls, Target, Dollar Tree, Ross, Michaels, and Party City.
We pray our efforts can bring a smile, ease a difficult time and provide comfort. For God to show us how we can be a light to these children and their families. We pray for His light to shine through us and bring new hope.