Saturday, February 23, 2013

4 Ways YOU can Make a difference

In our fast and busy lives, we tend to ignore, put out of our minds, or just totally forget the fatherless. When God called Darren and I to adopt, our hearts were totally wrenched as we read statistic after statistic of the many neglected and forgotten little ones around the world.  I believe that we as Christians have a great responsibility and we as American Christians often have not only the responsibility, but the resources God has blessed us with to take care of His little ones.

There's an anonymous quote, which I may have quoted before, but it gets me every time:

“Sometimes I would like to ask God why He allows poverty, suffering, and injustice when He could do something about it.”
“Well, why don’t you ask Him?”
“Because I’m afraid He would ask me the same question.”

What can you do to help the 140 MILLION orphans around the world? Here are 4 ways you can make a difference today!

1) Pray that God will give you HIS heart for the fatherless. This can be a dangerous prayer! If you search the Scriptures, you will find that God loves His children and He commands His people to love and care for those without family. His heart breaks for those little children. When you ask God to give you His heart, I believe that God will challenge you in ways you never thought possible.

2) Consider sponsoring a child. There are many avenues through which you can sponsor a child monthly. Our family sponsors a little girl in Nicaragua through Latin American Child Care. There are other programs such as Compassion or World Vision which are great programs. This is a way to provide for a child in great poverty, so that they can stay with their families. So often children are abandoned because parents don't have the money to care for them. This is a solution that shows the love of God and these programs share the love of Jesus to those in great need. Many familes come to know Jesus through these programs and it prevents many children from becoming "orphans".

3) Support adoption & open up your heart to see if God would have you to adopt. You might think you would not be a good candidate for adopting a child, but I believe there are many families that God is calling to adopt. Children NEED the love of familes! Even if God does NOT call you to adopt, I believe every Chrisitian should support adoption. You can do this in numerous ways. Here are just a few.
-Donate financially to those who are taking the step of faith to adopt.

-Bring meals to those who have just brought their new little one home. The transition time can be rough, and even a meal or two can be an amazing blessing!

-Offer to help watch siblings while new adoptive parents go to doctor's visits, therapists and dentist visits with their new little one. These visits can be numerous, especially when first coming home, and having someone help watch the other children is a God-send!

-Get involved in an adoption ministry in your church...if your church doesn't have one-start one!

-Advocate for children who need families.

-Host an orphan for a month or two. There are many programs out there where you can host an older child or teenager. Some of them are not even available for adoption, but the difference you can make by connecting with their lives is unbelievable.

4) Support foster care and pray about becoming foster parents. There are children right in our neighborhoods who have been transferred from family to family. They are hurting and confused. We need loving, Christian homes to provide stability to broken children. If you don't feel called to become a foster parent, find some way to support those Christian parents who you know are taking care of those precious children! They need your prayers, love and support. It is not an easy job and God didn't call any one of us to do it alone. A few ways you can support these parents: Make a meal (food is always welcome!), invite them over to your house, give them a gift card or money to help purchase needed items, and let them know you are praying for them!! Advocate, learn and teach others about fostering and adopting. 

Everyone can and should care for God's children, and in turn many of them will come to know Him! Please consider these things and figure out your place in caring for His little ones! You can change a life (or two, three, four or more!) 

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