David Lemache is a pastor and the rector of the Nazarene Theological Seminary in Quito, Ecuador. Here, he shares part of his story of growing up as a sponsored child and what it has meant to him.
My parents came to the Lord in the midst of a great crisis. My dad was an alcoholic, and he created a lot of suffering for my mother. The physical and verbal abuse was routine until God came into their hearts.
Shortly after coming to faith in Christ, my parents received God’s call to serve as pastors. They left everything to go study at the Nazarene seminary in Guayaquil, Ecuador. They came from very poor homes with few opportunities, but with a lot of hard work they earned degrees in theology and began pastoring.
One day my dad gave my younger sister and me good news: We were going to have new “godparents” who lived in another country and wanted to help us. I didn’t know what a godparent was, though, so I decided to call mine “friend.”
This friend was my child sponsor, and that’s how God extended His hand to help beyond my circumstances. My friend helped me every month, even if the situation in my country was difficult, even if we had moved houses for the 10th time, and even if I had been behaving badly toward my mother. My friend was a great gift from God.
I learned the world is bigger than I thought. As a child, I didn’t know there were other cultures, countries, and ways of thinking. Despite differences in preferences such as food or sports, one thing my friend and I always agreed on was our faith.
Sponsorship showed me that God uses His children to bless others. I began to understand that our friendship was part of God’s plan. I now serve as rector of the Nazarene Theological Seminary in Quito, Ecuador. I am convinced this last part of my life could not have been written without the help of a friend God used in my childhood.