Me, you, and 147 million orphansBy Trillia Newbell | November 1st, 2011 | Category: Uncategorized | Comments Off on Me, you, and 147 million orphans
by Leslie Nack
Few things get me as excited as talking about adoption and orphan care. Since November is Adoption Awareness Month, let’s talk! If you spend much time reading in the Christian blogosphere, you have read a lot about adoption over the past five years or so. In fact, you may be thinking right now, “Ugh, is this another one of those trendy, go-save-a-baby-in-Africa columns? I cannot handle the hype anymore!” Hopefully, you will not find hype in this column, but instead you will get a small picture of God’s love for the orphan and how He is asking you, His daughter, to join Him in loving orphaned children.
God is clear in the Bible that He loves orphans (do a word search for fatherless in a Bible sometime) and He is clear that He wants His followers to love what He loves. Now, I almost failed a logic class in college, but it seems pretty obvious to me that this means that God’s people should also love and care for orphans. While some people are calling the current focus on adoption trendy, others are calling it a move of God and I agree. However, while God is moving many people to become adoptive parents, not every person should adopt and there are so many ways that you can care for the orphan around the world and in your own town. So, without further adieu, here are some ways that you can answer God’s call to care for orphans.
1) Educate Yourself.
There is a big world out there that does not look like your suburban neighborhood. I am not hating on the suburbs, I live there, too. Take time to read blogs, books and articles on the plight of orphaned children. Many of our societal ills that flow from children who do not have adults caring for them: child sex trafficking and child labor slaves, to name two. Once your heart is stirred, move on to some action steps below.
Set aside a time each week to pray for the plight of the world’s 147 million orphans. You can pray in general or specifically pray for a country, an orphanage or the foster children in your own county. My friend Michelle taught her children to pray for the children in an orphanage that her church supported; in turn her daughter wanted to donate the contents her piggy bank to help with a water project at the orphanage.
There are so many ways to spend your time to help parentless children. Go overseas to visit an orphanage and assist the workers, donate one Saturday a month to a group home in your area, or offer to tedious office work in your local Department of Children’s Services.
There are so many worthy organizations that use funds responsibly to help orphaned children. Many foster homes and orphanages also need every day necessities like clothes, diapers, toys, and books. Sponsoring a child through a relief agency is a great way to help children stay in the homes of relatives who need financial assistance to care for the children. Find a way to sacrifice in your life to support the life of another. Some great organizations will be listed below.
5) Support Care Givers.
Do you know someone in your life who has adopted or is fostering children? Do you know grandparents who are raising their grandchildren? Offer support to these sweet people that have opened their home in honor of God’s command to parent these children. Check in on an adopting mom the same way that you would check in on a pregnant mom. Offer to be the errand runner for a foster family who may need extra supplies for children who are placed in their home on the spur of the moment. Set up play dates or evenings out for these hard working care givers.
6) Open Your Heart. Open Your Home.
You had to know that I was going here. Pray and consider adopting or fostering children who need a home. It is not an easy decision and it is not an easy road, but your self-denying decision can mean a lifetime of love for a child who has lost everything. My husband and I hope to begin our foster care journey in 2012 and I hope to write about it on WOG.
Some of my favorite resources: