This blog is the third and final blog in a series titled, Caring for Orphans. The first blog was about why the church needs to get involved. The second listed four ways that you and your church can get involved. This blog is very similar to the second in that I will continue to explain more ways to get involved in orphan care around the world.
Number Four: Find ways to help make adopted and fostered children feel welcomed as well as encourage their adoptive and fostered families. Many do not fully realize the struggle it is for a child to make the transition from orphanage or foster care into a permanent family. Sometimes this struggle can manifest itself in bad behavior, quietness, or aggressiveness. No matter what, be there for them. Encourage your church to accept them, maybe even make accommodations if they have special needs. Send them an invitation to your child’s birthday party. Kindly greet them at church with a warm smile and a sincere, “how are you?”
Realize that adoptive and foster families can feel ostracized or misunderstood. This can often be a huge burden that can go unnoticed, especially if the child is having a difficult time adjusting. Find ways to show that you appreciate their obedience and how they are facing challenges head on. Send them kind letters in the mail. Provide meals for them. Agree to watch their children so they can go on a much needed date. Invite them to lunch and be all ears. Find ways to be a support system for them.
And remember, just as it might be difficult for the adopted or fostered child and their parents, it might also be just as difficult for their brothers and sisters. Try also to support, love, and encourage them. Help them know that they have not been overlooked.
Number Five: Adopt or foster a child. There is no guarantee that agreeing to adopt or foster a child will be fast or easy. God does, on the other hand, guarantee that he will not leave or forsake you throughout the entire process (Deut. 31:6; 1 Chron. 28:20; Heb. 13:5). If God is calling you to adopt or foster, I would encourage you to do your homework about different agencies. Try to find an honest, trusted, respected, and Christian agency to help with your case.
With that being said, if God is leading you down this path, then please proceed with unwavering faith! Adoption and foster care are beautiful representations of the gospel. Your decision to adopt or foster needs to be celebrated. The Boaz Project would love to come alongside of you and help in any way we can.
Number Six: Give financially towards an adoption or organization that works in orphan care. The cost to adopt can seem astronomical. The financial needs required for a non-profit to do orphan care well are steep. The body of Christ needs to join together and give sacrificially towards helping eradicate the orphan crisis. One of my favorite quotes of all time is from Anne Frank: “No one has ever become poor from giving.” What wisdom that young girl possessed! And there is no better time to prove that statement’s accuracy than now.
The Boaz Project provides grants to screened adoptive parents. If you would like to make a donation towards helping a child erase their label of “orphan” or “foster kid,” then you can do so by giving HERE.
Number Seven: Participate in fundraisers and other events that raise awareness. Two big events that The Boaz Project offers are Ladies Night Out and our annual Race for an Orphan 5k. I would venture to say that nine out of ten orphan care ministries also hold at least two fundraising events a year. When you see one of them advertised, sign yourself up. And while you’re at it, encourage your church, small group, friends, and family to sign up with you.
Number Eight: Pray without ceasing. If you’re like me, sometimes this seems like the cop out answer. When compared to adopting or giving a ton of money, praying can seem so simple and insignificant. But that could not be farther from the truth! Serious prayer is a serious weapon. Prayer changes things! Here are eight Bible verses that reveal how powerful prayer is: Ps. 107:28-30; Mt. 7:7, 21:22; Mk. 9:29, 11:24; Jn. 14:13-14; Ac. 9:40; Jas. 5:14-16.
Would you set up a prayer group at your church to pray for orphans? Would you set aside a certain day to pray and fast for orphans? Would you commit 10 minutes every night before you go to bed to pray for orphans? Would you make it a habit to pray for orphans before every meal?
“Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.”
We each have a role to play.
Not one role is better than the other.
What role has God given you?