Wes Stafford, in his book Just a Minute, says profoundly, “I have become convinced that if God stands a child before you, for even just a minute, it is a divine appointment.”
Anna* spent seven months working on the streets, enduring long nights in dark alleys and wishing there was something – anything better than the life she was living. This had never been the plan. But what hope did she have?
Growing up in a rural village in Southern Ethiopia, Anna knew of God. He was just not a big part of her life. She got a boyfriend and soon found out she was pregnant. The boyfriend was soon out of the picture and Anna felt very alone and ashamed of her life in the small village. After giving birth to a little boy, she decided to try and start a new life in Addis Ababa where she had some relatives she could stay with. When she got to the capital though, things didn’t go like she’d planned. After a particularly heavy disagreement with her aunt and uncle, Anna was forced to leave, and suddenly she found herself on the street in a strange city with her little boy, all alone.
“Many times we can substitute our prayers for action. When we pray for a better world, we should be taking actionable steps to make the world better…” – Ashley Walker, Live Justly Series
I read a great article called “Ten Simple Ways to Live Justly Today” and started thinking about this concept that our faith should be prayer that is backed up by action. Too often, I know that I pray in a fleeting moment for the orphan, or even for a specific child, and move on. But what if I prayed – asked God to work – and then followed the Spirit in fulfilling that prayer?
What if you could step into another culture for an evening? What would you see? What would you learn? How would it change you?
Recently, we did just that with a local youth group. We started the evening with some walk through exhibits where they could read about global poverty and then walk into “Haiti” complete with a hut, market and yard area.
What does freedom mean to you? Have you ever sat down and thought about that?
Freedom, in simple terms, is defined as:
As followers of Jesus, we also believe there is a great and powerful freedom in surrender to Christ with our lives. And when I add all of that up, I am overwhelmed with the realization that freedom is truly a gift. A gift that so few around the world really live in.
Are you looking for some great resources to share about orphans in your church or small group? Do you want to do something to help people around you stand up for vulnerable children?
Frederick Buechner once said that “the place God calls you to should be the place where your deepest gladness and the world’s deepest hurts meet.”
Like many new phases of life, that means stepping outside our comfort zones to discover where the world’s deepest hurts are. And this week, there’s a small group of men in Haiti doing just that.
Ed Schwartz, LSM’s President is leading a Vision team through Les Cayes, Haiti to teach about some of the world’s deepest hurts that nearly a million vulnerable children in Haiti are exposed to. He’s also showing them our response to those painful realities.
This week, as we look forward to Father’s Day this weekend, we want to celebrate and talk about one of the most important relationships we have in life – dads.
We believe that fathers are a foundational part of helping children become all they can be. It’s a core value that we hold as an organization, and we work hard to create and sustain families with a mom and dad present when at all possible because we know the sense of worth and example that dads bring to the family. It’s not hard to see the value and impact that a dad has in a child’s life. But what about the kids who don’t have that?
(Read the story here.) We have been so blessed to walk with you all over the last few years and see God provide along this bittersweet journey. The Cancer Redemption Project in Cavaillon, Haiti has provided forever families for 72 orphaned and extremely vulnerable children. A church and school for the surrounding area are now the highest point in that village – shining brightly as a remembrance of God’s faithfulness and eternal hope.
Since Zach’s death, his wife Jenny has tirelessly continued the vision to raise the rest of the ongoing support they committed to finding for the Home of Hope families. The office has been full of anticipation over the last several months as we’ve watched funds come in to complete their fundraising goals. God has been faithful!