Tomorrow is National Orphan Sunday, a day set aside to specifically remember the 147+ million orphans worldwide. Christians are called to defend the fatherless (Psalm 82:3), so as Jason and I embark on this journey of adopting an orphan from China into our family, I feel more convicted than ever by this verse. I realize that not everyone is called to adopt, but all believers of Jesus Christ are commanded to defend the fatherless. That can take on various forms in addition to adoption...it may mean being a foster parent; it may mean giving financially to families in the process of adopting; it may mean starting an orphan ministry in your church; or it may mean praying diligently for the 147+ million orphans in need of a forever family. I am so thankful that one day there will be one less orphan when God brings us our daughter from China!
Tomorrow is also the longest day of the year...don't forget to "fall back" and change your clocks before your head hits the pillow tonight so you can get an extra hour of sleep! As I've thought about having one more hour in the day, my mind can't help but think about my mom and how much I would love to have just one more hour with her! I miss her so much, but I know she is full of joy and fully healed in the presence of Jesus. Having "one more hour" reminds me of the importance of relationships...when all is said and done, all that really matters in this life is our relationships--with God and with others.
Something I found before my mom died that I will cherish forever is a hand written note she did in 2001 while attending a cancer support group I coordinated at my church when Jason and I lived in Birmingham. I had asked each of the participants to complete acrostics of various words, including LIFE. My mom wrote:
L--Love is most imporant part of it.
I--I want to make a difference before I leave this place!
F--Family bonds are everything!
E--Eternity with Jesus
My mom "got it"--she understood what mattered most in this life and the life to come. She knew how to spend all of her hours. So what does this have to do with orphans? A lot in my mind! My mom was the first person I told about our decision to follow God's call to adopt and she was thrilled beyond words. She knew that every child needs and deserves love. She knew that Jason and I want to make a difference in all of our children's lives, including our daughter from China. She knew that every child needs and deserves to be in a loving family forever. And most importantly, my mom knew that our daughter from China would have an opportunity to hear about the love and salvation found in Jesus Christ, just like our biological children, and hopefully one day spend eternity with Him!
So how will you spend your hours? Every minute counts!