July 5, 2017

God’s to-do list for YOU!

Are you a list maker?

I am. I’m one of those weirdos who gets a charge out of making a to-do list for the day and triumphantly striking items off as they’re completed.

Sometimes, mid-morning, I’ll even write “shower” on the list and cross it out as something I’ve already accomplished. It gives me some kind of endorphin shot to know that I’ve gotten something done, even if it wasn’t very heroic.

My husband, Jim, and I are now six-months in to our fixer-upper challenge. You should see the lists! We have a whole pad of them. There was the “This Needs to Get Finished Before We Can Move in” list, then the “Get This Done So There’s a Space for the Kids to Come Home to” list. There’s the “Things to Do Before Our Appraisal” list and the “This Can Be Wait Until After the Appraisal” list.

Every day, there’s a “Lowe’s” list—the supplies we need for the task ahead. And the minute we get home from buying everything on the Lowe’s list, we start the “Things We Should Have Gotten the First Time We Went to Lowe’s” list.

Many of my lists have sub-lists. I’m just that fancy.

Recently, I was listening to a Donald Miller podcast which had been marketed as a time-management revelation. Once I started listening, I discovered it was really about making to-do lists. At first, I didn’t think that was all that revolutionary.

But then he asked a very poignant question: “What are the things that—if you DON’T do them today—you’ll regret?”

I sat in a stunned silence.

I wanted to hide the to-do list I had prepared for the day, even though no one else was looking at it.

You see, I knew that if I let that 24-hour time frame pass without spending time in solitude with Jesus, it would be regrettable. I knew that if I didn’t intentionally connect with Jim at some point that day, it would be a day wasted.

I knew I should text my daughter, just to remind her that I love her with my whole heart. And I should make my son’s favorite meal because, well…he’s 19. Nothing says love to him like Favorite Chicken.

The problem was that none of those things were on my to-do list. Not one.

And I started to wonder…If God had written my to-do list for the day, what would it have looked like?

Maybe God DOES write a to-do list for me each day. And when I actually do something He planned for me, He gets great satisfaction from crossing it off the list.

How often do I give Him that joy?

I’m afraid that all too often, I’m much too wrapped up in building my own little kingdom to be distracted by His.

But the Lord’s Prayer says, “Thy kingdom come.”

Thine. Not mine.

God’s agenda should dictate my to-do’s. His plans should order my day.

And what does His kingdom look like? What is His agenda?

Psalm 68:5-6a says,

A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows,
is God in his holy dwelling.
God sets the lonely in families,
(NIV)

Scripture describes God’s kingdom as a beautiful time and place where there are no orphans, no widows, no lonely and no tears. There’s no death, no sorrow, no illness or pain.

When I write those truths, I can eagerly say, “Thy kingdom come!”

And when I think of my orphan friends, I am reminded of the tears they shed in prayer. They long so desperately for a kingdom without death, pain, separation, ridicule–a world without neglect or abuse, loneliness or hunger.

So I pray for God’s kingdom to come. Now, I need to adjust my to-do lists to look like I mean it.

What would my to do list look like if God wrote it?

We actually don’t have to wonder. He did.

Micah 6:8 tells us, “What does the Lord require of you? To
act justly and to
love mercy and to
walk humbly with your God.”

Three tasks. How many of them have I accomplished today? How many of them even made it onto my to-do list?

As the people of God, we need daily, practical agendas that line up with His. Then, when we check items off our to-do lists, we can know that God is celebrating with us!

As you pray for The Boaz Project this month,

Pray that the Church would pray in earnest, “Thy kingdom come,” and then work to make it happen!

Thank God for the Southern Gospel benefit concert one of our donors held. It was a great fundraiser that gave The Boaz Project increased exposure in the community.

Pray for our house parents, that they would have the stamina necessary to persevere through the financial, spiritual and relational challenges that face them daily.

Thank God and celebrate with our House of Joy in India. One of the girls from this home, Rheka, was married. Another, Salamuthu, was baptized! Please pray that both of these young ladies would live lives which bring joy to their heavenly Father.

Praise God for the safety and productivity He granted our teams traveling to India and Russia. He answered many specific prayers along the way!

Believing in miracles,
April

*This article is the second 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.

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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.

FAQ

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?

This is completely up to you. The entire process is self-directed. There are no deadlines, and you may take as much or as little time as you need to complete each course.




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!




What if I don’t have any social media accounts?

We will adjust your requirements to accommodate you and provide different opportunities to engage.




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

Yes! When you complete each level, you will receive a certification that you can use to enhance your professional profile and to show involvement in community service.




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.




How do I get started?

If you think you would like to begin Orphan Advocate Training, please complete the form below, and you’ll be assigned an OAT Coach. Once your coach reviews your information, he/she will send you an email with your next steps!




Who do I contact if I have any other questions?

Please complete the form below or contact OAT@boazproject.org with any questions.

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