September 11, 2017

An Orphan’s Daily Bread…and Yours

** If you’re looking for “Your Measure of Forgiveness, please click here**

Give us today our daily bread-  Matt. 6:11 (NIV)

I haven’t always appreciated this line in The Lord’s Prayer the way I do today.

I mean, I’ve understood since childhood that to ask for bread was to ask for our nutritional sustenance. Something to keep our tummies from growling and a headache from pounding. Something to stop those low-blood-sugar dizzy spells and help me keep some mental focus.

I’ve never known real hunger, but I don’t like even the occasional foretaste that leaves me grouchy and spacey.

But usually when I’m hungry, it’s my own fault. I didn’t give myself enough time in the morning to prepare any food before dashing out the door. Or I forgot to stash a protein bar in my purse before heading to my child’s soccer game. It’s not that I don’t have access to sound nutrition. It’s just that I can rely on the availability of fast food or a gas-station snack to get me out of an occasional scrape with a bit of appetite or even a hankering.

In my context, bread is something the restaurant places on the table—for free—while you wait for the “real” food to arrive.

In fact, our culture often shuns bread as “bad carbs.”

When my husband and I lived in Russia in the early 90’s, though, bread was viewed much differently.

We would bundle up on a snowy morning and walk the icy sidewalks to the bread factory’s kiosk. There, we would stand in line behind those who’d risen even earlier to face the bitter cold in order to obtain life-giving bread.

If one batch sold out, the cold and hungry hopeful would wait for the next.

Why? Because in the newly post-Soviet Russia, food was hard to find. Prepared food that was ready to eat? Only bread. Inexpensive food? Bread topped that list, too.

And so we stood, awaiting our daily bread. For some, it was the only food they could afford. Of course, it was carby. But it kept starvation at bay for one more day.

It also taught me to take the phrase “our daily bread,” more seriously.

But nothing has impacted my thinking on this phrase from The Lord’s Prayer more than a story about World War II orphans.

As the war drew to a close, the Allies created facilities for children who were orphaned as part of the combat‘s toll. Though they were safe and well-nourished, the children were unable to sleep at night.

Those working with the children consulted a psychologist. He encouraged the caregivers to place a piece of bread in each child’s hand as they went to bed at night.

The orphanage staff balked, “But we feed the children well and do not send them to bed hungry!”

The psychologist explained that after the destructive trauma these children had experienced, they were inclined to worry about tomorrow. If they could be assured there was still food left for the next day, they would have peace enough to let slumber come.

It turns out, he was right. Once assured they’d have their daily bread, the children relaxed and slept soundly.

We may not always feel our dependence upon God for our daily bread the way those children did, but we must acknowledge our dependence regardless. As we ask for our daily bread, we acknowledge to our Father who art in heaven—and to ourselves!—that He is our great Provider.

May you hunger for Jesus, the Bread of Life, with the same insatiable desire. May you crave His presence so desperately that having a taste of Him today is not sufficient. May you yearn for the morning, when you can savor Him again, and may you partake of Him sufficiently to keep starvation at bay for one more day!

*This article is the fourth in a series walking through The Lord’s Prayer from an orphan’s perspective.

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Because God knew that abandoned children would need help to survive, He tells us to actively meet the needs of orphans in James 1:27.

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When you choose to partner with The Boaz Project, you'll restore hope, ensure a brighter future through education, and share the love of Jesus with children who desperately need it.

Just imagine the impact you can have—from saving a child from the horrors of the streets to helping them become community leaders, educators, and nurturers of the next generation.

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Orphan Advocate Training Certification Levels

Level 1

Learn about the mission and vision of The Boaz Project through activities such as watching an Encounter webinar, exploring our website, and following us on social media. You will also have the opportunity to meet and interact with your Orphan Advocate Training Coach, who will help you as you go through the levels.

Level 2

Gain more insight into the realities of the orphan crisis through reading "The Orphan’s Abba" and visiting The Boaz Project YouTube page. You will also meet The Boaz Project staff.

Level 3

Grow in your understanding of the orphan crisis, meet some houseparents by reading their stories, and create your own "Pick 2" with options like watching a movie and completing a creative project utilizing your unique skill set.

Level 4

Enhance your knowledge of healthy attachments for orphans, watch a webinar about Eastern Europe’s institutional orphanage system, and visit the Boaz office virtually or in person.

Level 5

Utilize all of the knowledge you have gained throughout training to develop methods based on your personal experience to share the mission and vision of The Boaz Project with others. Read a portion of our first level Houseparent Trauma Training and use your unique skills to impact orphans with a special project. Completing Level 5 gives you the option to apply to become an OAT Coach and/or a Regional Coordinator for The Boaz Project.


Do I have to live near Greenwood, Indiana to complete the training?

No! This certification is intentionally created to allow opportunities for anyone in any location to fully participate.

How much of a time commitment is it?

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Can I do this training with my spouse? Or a friend?

Yes! Going through the training with a spouse or friend can provide accountability and motivation. As you progress, you may be able to accomplish more together!

How much will it cost?

All Orphan Advocate Training courses are free to join! While you may choose to spend money while completing some projects, there are only minimal costs involved (such as a book or a few supplies) depending on which course you choose to do.

Is there an age requirement to become a Certified Orphan Advocate Trainee?

This would be answered on a case-by-case basis. This would also be open to middle schoolers or high schoolers looking to complete volunteer hours (i.e. National Honor Society) or build college applications. We always encourage young people to be involved if they feel led by God to do so!

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If I complete the five-level Orphan Advocate Training Certification, can I put it on my resume or LinkedIn profile?

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Will I be able to get a signed letter to verify my volunteer hours?

We are sorry that we cannot verify volunteer hours that are done outside of the office or an event due to the fact that these hours are not supervised. However, we can write about the quality of work that was done, your commitment level, and the training courses achieved. We can also say that your self-reported, unsupervised hours fit into the typical number of hours that are usual for that course.

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