"I will not leave you as orphans. I will come to you." - John 14:18

Monday, August 23, 2010

Sobering Statistics

It is estimated there are between 143 million and 210 million orphans worldwide (recent UNICEF report.)

The current population of the United States is just a little over 300 million… to give you an idea of the enormity of the numbers… (The current population of Russia is 141 million)Every day 5,760 more children become orphans

2,102,400 more children become orphans every year in Africa alone

Every 15 seconds, another child in Africa becomes an AIDS orphan

There are an estimated 14 million AIDS orphans in Sub-Saharan Africa (a number higher than the total of every under-eighteen year old in Canada, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Ireland combined)This figure is estimated to reach 18 million orphans in Africa alone by 2010 (only two and a half years away)

8 out of 10 children orphaned by AIDS lives in sub-saharan Africa

Approximately 250,000 children are adopted annually, but…

Each year 14, 505, 000 children grow up as orphans and age out of the system by age sixteen

Each day 38,493 orphans age out

Every 2.2 seconds another orphan ages out with no family to belong to and no place to call home

In Russia and the Ukraine, studies have shown that 10% – 15% of these children commit sucide before they reach age eighteen

These studies also show that 60% of the girls become prostitutes and 70% of the boys become hardened criminals

Another Russian study reported that of the 15,000 orphans aging out of state-run institutions every year, 10% committed suicide, 5,000 were unemployed, 6,000 were homeless and 3,000 were in prison within three years…

Not everyone feels called to adopt, but I would hazard a guess that everyone has a heart for orphans. I ask you to pray for us and I invite you to be a part of helping us bring our child home. Not everyone can adopt an orphan, but everyone can help one out in ways both big and small. I have installed a Paypal Donate button at the top right hand of the site and, if you feel called to do so, please help us out with a contribution toward our adoption. If you donate I would love to send you a Ugan-Doll (I do monsters or girls/boys) so please make sure and leave me your address. I will also be adding an order form for Show Hope shirts in the next couple of days. Half of the price of each Show Hope shirt will go toward our adoption and there are tons of awesome designs to choose from.

Thank you for supporting us with your kind words and your prayers. We couldn't walk down this road without the support of so many.

May our hearts grow softer and our voices rise louder…

“Defend the cause of the weak and the fatherless; Maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed. Deliver the weak and needy from the hand of the wicked.” Ps 82:3-4

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Is This Wrong?

I am stealing this post from another blog (Life with the Hildebrands). It puts everything in sobering perspective.

Is this okay...

...while this still exists?

The Hebrew Scriptures have a very simple and direct message:

God always hears the cry of the oppressed:

God cares about human suffering and the conditions that cause it.

God is searching for a body, a community of people to care for the things God cares about.

God gives power and blessing so that justice and righteousness will be upheld for those who are denied them.

This is what God is like. This is what God is about. This is who God is.

To forget this, to fail to hear the cry, to preserve prosperity at the expense of the powerless, is to miss what God has in mind.

- Rob Bell, Jesus Wants to Save Christians

Monday, August 9, 2010

We Will Serve You While We're Waiting

Patience. This is so not my strong suit. We have completed all of the paperwork for our home study (HOORAY!) but now we have to get a loan from the bank to pay for it. That means 4 more weeks of waiting...big sigh. I can look back on my life and see that God's timing was perfect every single time - no exceptions, but, as I move forward in my life I always struggle against His timing. August is a tough month anyway with 5 birthdays in our immediate family and getting the kids all the gear to head back to school, add to that a broken water pump (and no water at the house - yuck!) that has to be replaced, waiting on this loan to come through and living in a rain forest-like climate in our normally temperate state...well, you probably get the picture, I am not the best me I can be. It is at times like this that I need to step back and take in all of the blessings in my life and, boy (or should I say girl!), there are a lot of them. I have been blessed in spades and then some and, as has been our mantra for 13 years of marriage "If money is our worst problem then we are probably doing okay". So today I choose love, today I choose joy, today I choose peace & patience & kindness. Today I choose faithfulness. Today I choose gentleness. Today I choose self-control. Today I choose to see the good in others, to count my blessings and to open my eyes to the need around me. Today I choose to go where He sends me knowing He has prepared the way (but I could probably use a prayer or two because, I am serious, that patience thing is REALLY tough for me!).

Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. To these I commit my day. If I succeed, I will give thanks. If I fail, I will seek His grace. And then when this day is done, I will place my head on my pillow and rest." - Max Lucado