This November we are highlighting the work of NGOs in China doing work on behalf of orphans. I have absolutely no first hand knowledge of any. How can this be? Meredith Toering is one my favorite Instagrammers, but I don’t know her or the precious work she’s doing for kiddos with heart issues beyond that. Maggie had her palate repaired while we were in process with her and recovered at Peace Home in Beijing, run by our agency Holt International. But beyond that I have only glimpses from other people’s pages. And our China babies did not benefit from great starts, which so many organizations are working tirelessly to give to orphans in China.
So, while I’m absolutely not a wealth of information when it comes to NGOs working in China, I can say this: that you, dear reader, if you have adopted or are praying about it, if you have delivered a meal to a just-just-home adoptive family, if you’ve helped fundraise or raised awareness of the plight of the orphan in China: you are my favorite NGO.
Every time we share a link that highlights a child for whom time is running out, we do the work.
Every time we fill in a square, buy an auction item, send a check, we do the work.
Every time you ask yourself if there is room for one more at your dinner table, commit to praying about it, or fill that chair, you are doing the work.
Let us not forget that if we all followed the wild call of the holy spirit to go and make orphans into sons and daughters, we could change the world.
No, seriously. Change the world.
So here’s my challenge to you and to me…
1. If you have an empty chair around your table, or the money to buy one and stick there, that you commit to praying if Father has someone in mind to fill it.
2. As part of your preps for the coming Christmas season, you find a way to bless those who are on the ground in China doing the precious work of helping these babies until we get there.
For our family, this looks like shopping from Holt International’s catalog, where one can spend anywhere from $17 to $1,700 and everything in between and it all goes to blessing the socks off people who are in crisis. And it’s tangible, which makes it a winner with kids.
Our family draws names on December 1st of a family member we can serve until Christmas Eve, when the first gift we open will be from our newly-revealed Secret Servant. This year, those gifts will be chosen from the Holt catalog because we are swimming in stuff and what we need so much more than trinkets is to know that we are teaching our kids what it is to give.
However you chose to work this out, invite your kids into this conversation with you. Let them work through the discrepancy between them and the rest of the world; they need to know that. And then have an honest conversation about how we can stretch ourselves to help because maybe the best gift we can give Jesus this season is supporting the people he’s called to China.
And maybe the best gift we can give is to offer to go ourselves.
After all, he left heaven (HEAVEN!) to come to us, so that we might be gathered into those strong arms, poor orphans that we are. He came so that we can be called sons and daughters in a world that is fighting to keep us spiritual orphans.
This is the greatest gift. What shall we do with it?