Tuesday, October 9, 2012

I dare you to move....

Sometimes I want to ask God why He allows poverty, famine & injustice in the world...

… but I’m afraid He may ask me the same question.

Have you ever felt like your heart was going to absolutely explode with a certain feeling? As if there is so much passion and emotion wrapped up in a single thought, idea, or feeling, that you might just die right there? Maybe it was a feeling of love, like the birth of a child. Maybe it was even fear during a frightening situation. For some time now, we've felt that "about to burst" feeling. But ours has been one of desperation. Of needing, wanting other people to see, to understand, to even begin to get a glimpse of the crisis of the world's orphans, the awesomeness of adoption, and of the command to the church to do something about it.

In our eyes, adoption is NOT a fertility issue. Yes, of course, some couples who struggle with fertility do adopt. And I am SO glad. But for years and years, I think it has been resigned to that category. It's been looked at as a Plan B.

But not anymore.

There is a movement occurring. 

A Gospel movement.

One in which this generation sees and understands, and doesn't shy away from problems in this world. A generation which seeks out the issues. One that wants to know the hard and desperate truth of this world, of this life, and wants to make it better. One that understands that adoption and orphan care are not "social" issues. They are Gospel issues.

Because WE were orphans. WE were adopted. (Ephesians 1:5)

And as a result, the mandate in scripture is clear for us. 

Care for the least of these. (Matthew 25:31-46)

Father to the fatherless. (Psalm 68:5)

Pure and true religion. (James 1:27)

I will not leave you as orphans. (John 14:18)

For 30+ years, we have "followed" Jesus. We've learned about him since birth. We've taught our kids about him. We've done what we were supposed to do in the eyes of the American church.

And what resulted was a pitiful excuse for what a follower of the true Jesus really should be.




We want to change that.

But for 30 years, how did we never hear the facts? How has the church been so blind to the desperate needs in this world? Why isn't this being preached by everyone that comes up to a pulpit? Why isn't it being pounded over and over into our heads that WE WERE ORPHANS TOO. That we deserved nothing. BUT, now we have everything! 

And now that we have heard and understand, we can do something tangible to give others a picture of that love. Of our own adoption. 

How do we not abandon our self-centered Sunday worship in our comfy pews and open our eyes to the real deal? 

We want hard lessons. Hard truths. Challenge. 

Not apathy.

Because this is the real deal. And I cannot be apathetic when I know this...

147 MILLION children in this world are orphans. And that number does not include the scores of abandoned, sold, and/or trafficked children. (That's roughly half of the population of the US!) Seriously.

Every day 5,760 more children become orphans. Every. Single. Day.

Each year, 14.5 million orphans become "unadoptable" because they are considered too old. At the ripe old age of 14-16. 

Children who grow up as orphans are subject to abuse, poverty, and scorn.
An estimated 1.2 million children are trafficked every year. Orphans are particularly susceptible to this practice.
2 million children, the majority of them girls, are sexually exploited in the multibillion-dollar commercial sex industry. 
In some countries, orphans are seen as a curse. And God-forbid you have a special need. Especially a visible one. Really. God. Help. You.
And here we sit, wanting to make sure that our church has good coffee on Sunday. And we better be able to drink it while we listen to a sermon. And eat our bagel. And gosh, the worship band better have their act together today and lay down some great tunes.
Are you kidding me?
Can we get over ourselves for a minute?
When will we wake up? How long will it take us to see that when Jesus calls us to care for the "least of these," this is what he means!! 
Who is less than the orphan?
Without provision.
Without a name.
Without a voice.
Without an advocate.
Cast aside and ignored as someone else's problem.
Don't you see? If we care for orphans, we affect so many other things...poverty, education, trafficking, disease, hunger. We give hope. We give love. We give truth and worth. 
There is redemption.
Beauty for ashes. (Isaiah 61:3)
We're not called to do huge things. Just to love and show love.
As Eric Ludy says in his message, Depraved Indifference, it's not ok to read in the Bible that God is the "father to the fatherless," and think we're off the hook because He takes care of it.
He takes care of it through us. Aren't WE, the church, the hands and feet of Jesus? 
So, let's do something about it! Let's stop talking about justice and mission and move on it. 
Foster a child.
Pursue adoption.
Heck, help support another family that is pursuing adoption.
Sponsor a child through Compassion International.
Support ministries/charities that care for orphans. (Love Without BoundariesShow HopeInternational Voice of the Orphan, etc.)
Just. Do. Something.
You don't have to be perfect. You don't even have to be close.
Heck, you don't even have to be a "good" person. 
You just have to care. And engage.
And be willing to obey, have a little faith, and offer a whole lot of grace (even to yourself). 
Now, go!
The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
 -Lao Tzu, Chinese philosopher


  1. A to the M to the E to the N. Seriously.

  2. Thank you for this post and for not being afraid to lay down the facts! I linked this post on my blog and I may even put it on FB because everyone needs to read this!
    I found you through We Are Grafted In last week. Glad I did. :)