Today’s post is from Ann from Harvest Ministry. I spoke with her the other day regarding their orphan care ministry and I was deeply moved by the following story. In fact, I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it! Thanks, Ann, for sharing it here!.
I want to thank you for the opportunity to share with your Homegrown Mom readers about the world’s need for helping orphans. I’m a lifelife homemaking, homeschooling mom of 7 “kids” ages 10 to 24 (with three kids still living at home).
For over 20 years, my husband and I have worked in full-time mission evangelism and church planting through Harvest Ministry, and in the last five years, this has expanded to loving orphans (beginning with trusting God to help 30 kids, to now being fully responsible for over 700 orphan children, in both Africa and India). As a mother, my heart SO goes out to precious little ones who don’t have a mom to tuck them in at night, and neglected hungry kids who no one is reaching.
A huge joy just this past month, was when our newlywed son and his bride (Josh & Anna, married just 3 months) went on their first mission trip together as husband & wife. These “kids” had nothing but vision . . . yet in only a few short months, they pioneered a brand-new orphan home called PROJECT INDIA – Aasha (Hope) Children’s Home. In just a few months, their “vision” went from a dream to reality. Through a simple letter (and lots of prayer), God provided ALL the support they needed (for airline tickets, travel expenses, home-start-up-costs, AND ongoing continual support for these 10 orphan children — pledged by loving friends and family). It’s inspiring . . . especially when you take a moment to seek God for what could possibly happen through your family, perhaps even within the next few years. Hey, if 22-year-old newlyweds with no money and no support-base can pioneer an orphan home for 10 children — from scratch — you could too!
Here’s some food for thought:
What God says about Orphans
Startling Orphan Statistics
I would like to share a vivid and compelling “picture” I saw (in my mind) during a time of prayer about two weeks ago. It relates to the urgent need for missions, helping orphans, and God’s unique call on my life . . . and a dramatic scene from Gone With the Wind.
Recently, a lady in our church had a dream, in which she was walking through a beautiful mansion. As she went through some of the rooms, she she felt left out and unneeded. But finally, she found a particular room she loved. At last, she felt “at home” in the mansion; and soon, this woman was making friends and given a specific job to do, that was perfect for her.
Our pastor recently related this woman’s dream in a sermon. He believed this mansion represented the Kingdom of God, and the different “rooms” represented various churches and congregations. Just as this woman had found her “place in the house” (finding a church family and a place of ministry where she could thrive) our pastor encouraged us to seek God for His purpose for our lives.
Using this example, I spent some time in prayer, asking the Lord to show me, more specifically than ever, my specific place and purpose in His Kingdom. As I was walking on a wooded trail surrounding our home, I felt like I saw a picture in my mind. I too was in a mansion, similar to the opening scenes of Scarlett O’Hara’s home, “Tara,” from Gone With the Wind. Then, in my thoughts, I felt led to go downstairs . . . to a massive basement. As I looked over the “room” (which suddenly appeared to be outdoors), I was reminded of another scene from Gone With the Wind, when Scarlett is searching for the doctor to come help with her friend Melanie’s birth.
In the movie, Scarlett walks through a graphic Civil War scene, where many wounded soldiers are lying in row-after-row on the ground, moaning for help. As the imagery is captured on film, the camera pans to a broader-and-broader viewpoint, as the intense scope of the Civil War’s casualties are revealed. At last, when Scarlett finds the frazzled doctor and begs him to come help, he responds, “Are you crazy? I can’t leave these men for a baby! They’re dying . . . bleeding to death in front of my eyes!”
In my picture, I saw a “room” filled with people. As my view expanded, I saw a massive open-air crowd, of all ages. It included multitudes of faces, from all nationalities . . . and many crying children. The faces extended on-and-on, farther than I could even imagine. I knew they represented people from around the world who needed to hear about Jesus, and orphans who needed to be rescued, and SOULS.
And just like that lone doctor in Gone With the Wind, there was hardly ANYONE working in this “room.” People were dying everywhere, and the need was beyond anything I had ever seen. As I prayed, I simply felt the Lord say to my heart, “Ann, you and Jon are called to THIS room . . . but you’re also called to go to other rooms in my house, to get others to come help. The need is great, and there aren’t enough workers. Go to mothers, families, homeschoolers, and churches . . . but don’t get distracted in the other rooms.”
This image is very raw right now in my emotions. This is the first time I’ve shared it publicly, or written it down, but I felt it fit with this month’s theme about identity. “Missions” is our family’s place in God’s Kingdom. We’ve seen desperate needs (even the past few weeks in Africa and India). We know we’re called to reach the lost and to rescue orphans . . . and also, to recruit others.
And please do think and pray about this need in the “basement.”
It’s real. And you could help.
With Love for the LOST, and God’s LITTLE ONES,
If anyone is interested in helping with a particular orphan project, something that’s a BIG need right now is BEDS for hundreds of orphan children who Ann and her family are helping in Uganda (their ministry recently purchased a truckload of mattresses and blankets, but these mattresses are still lying on the dirt floor.
To give for this specific need, we can go to THE CAUSE, and click on the project “MyCause4orphans” Enter Mission #0008 in the space under the project name. This will designate our giving for a specific orphan project for us here at Homegrown Mom — and our vision to purchase as many beds as possible (at about $20/each).
I believe most of us reading this can afford a $20 donation to get one child’s mattress up off the ground and onto a bed! Will you please join me and support this worthy cause? If you can’t afford $20, then donate whatever you can!