Monday, June 25, 2012

This Is Not Just My Thing

Everyone sort of has "their thing," right?  You know-the thing they are really passionate about, the thing they can't stop talking about every time you see them, the thing that gets them all excited and fired up.  Maybe it's music or a certain baseball team or a political view.  Maybe it's how they choose to school their kids or how they feed their infant.  Me?  I get really passionate about caring for orphans.  But I have to confess something.  When I post about adoption or I talk about orphan care, I have this underlying fear.  I fear that everyone will think I care about orphans purely because it's "my thing."

See, when someone's passionate about something that's just "their thing," you don't have to care about it, too.  It's fine and dandy if they want to get all hot and bothered about the importance of how to sleep train a baby- it's "their thing" after all!  I can read their passionate pleas for crying it out and forget about it ten minutes later; I can shrug it off as just "their thing."  Please, please, please do not see orphan care that way.  Why?  Because caring for orphans isn't just "my thing."  It isn't just something I'm into so I talk about it.  God is into caring for orphans, and that's why I care.  God is into caring for orphans and that is why it matters.

"In you the orphan finds mercy.” Hosea 14:3

"He executes justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the sojourner..." Deut. 10:18

"To you the helpless commits himself; you have been the helper of the fatherless." Psalm 10:14

"Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation." Psalm 68:5

"Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world." James 1:27

This isn't just "my thing."  God cares about orphans!  And He doesn't just care; scripture tells us over and over again that He acts to help the fatherless.  This matters to God and that's why it should really matter to us.  That doesn't just mean everyone should go out right now and start the adoption process.  (You're not going to find that anywhere in scripture!)  But it does mean that we should seek to cultivate that same heart of love for orphans that God has. It means that, like God, we can't just care.  We need to act.  

What might that look like?  Maybe God will call your family to give financially to an organization like Katelyn's Fund that helps families adopt.  Maybe God will call your family to step out in faith and bring a child into your home through international or domestic adoption.  Maybe He will lead you to become a foster parent or a safe family.  Maybe God will stir your heart to pray faithfully for the millions of orphans around the globe.  Maybe God will prompt you to support a family that's adopting (so many of you have done this for us!  Thank you!).  Maybe God will call you to sponsor a child.  Maybe God will lead you to take a trip overseas to volunteer in an orphanage.  Maybe God will direct you to start learning more about the orphan crisis.  Maybe God will draw you to help out at your local crisis pregnancy center.  That's just a small list of ways that we can care for orphans.  Sharing God's heart for the fatherless will look different for different people.

However it looks for us as individuals, we need to care about this.  Because this isn't just "my thing" or "your thing." This is God's thing.  It's obviously not His ONLY thing or even His MAIN thing (that spot's reserved for the Gospel).  But orphan care really is one of His things so it should be one of ours, too.

(Note:  Todd Augustine, a pastor at College Church and a dear friend of ours, came and preached an awesome message at our church a couple weeks ago about God's heart of love for the fatherless.  I can't recommend it highly enough!)

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6 Responses to “This Is Not Just My Thing”

  1. Amen! To God be the glory!

  2. KatherineJune 26, 2012

    Yes. Preach it, sister! Thanks so much for sharing.

  3. Yes! I love what you wrote about the fact that God not only cares about the fatherless but that he ACTS on their behalf. He is MOVING and doing and working. Wow wow wow.

  4. Johanna, that affects me so much, too! It isn't that hard to merely care. But to actually act? That's another story altogether. And that is what God does over and over and over!

  5. This is beautiful, Katie. It touches me to read words written by someone else, but yet it's like you took those very words from my heart. I love how our Father connects us with others who are on the same page. =)

  6. well said, friend! caring for orphans is a God-sized task, and we serve a God big enough to do it through all of us. love you!