Give money. Give a set monthly amount to an organization that’s working hard to meet the needs of suffering people throughout the world, such as the Five for 50 fund (www.fivefor50.com), which helps people suffering from AIDS or HIV. Consider giving special one-time gifts to other organizations whose work you admire.

Give time. Set aside several days each year to do volunteer work that benefits hurting people. Either travel overseas on a mission trip or work with suffering people domestically or even in your own community.

Change your shopping habits. Buy only from companies who engage in fair labor and trade practices. Support companies who donate a portion of their profits to help needy people, and those who provide employment opportunities to help people break out of poverty.

Sponsor a child. Connect with a ministry organization that works with children (such as Compassion International, www.compassion.com) to choose a child to support monthly in prayer and financially (for the costs of school tuition and supplies, immunizations, etc. that the child’s parents couldn’t otherwise afford). Invest in your sponsored child and build a relationship that will help that child grow to fulfill his or her highest potential.

Get others involved. Let other people know about what you’re doing to help the world’s suffering people, and why it’s important to you to do so. Blog about your work online, host a party at your house where you show pictures and tell stories, etc. Challenge your friends and family members to become involved in service themselves. Help them explore their options, and invite them to join you in your work if they’d like.

Adapted from Red Letters: Living a Faith that Bleeds, copyright 2007 by Tom Davis. Published by David C. Cook Publishing Co., Colorado Springs, Co., www.davidccook.com.
Tom Davis is an author, consultant, and the president of Children’s HopeChest (
www.hopechest.org) a Christian-based child advocacy organization helping orphans in Eastern Europe and Africa. His first book, Fields of the Fatherless has sold more than 60,000 copies. Tom holds a Business and Pastoral Ministry degree from Dallas Baptist University and a Master’s Degree in Theology from The Criswell College.