“Are you heading back to India anytime soon?” I was asked.

“I do, I actually leave tomorrow.” I giggled. These sentences were exchanged with an old friend/coach whom I hadn’t seen in a few years. And as it shows, traveling to India is something that has just become a part of me.

You see, a few weeks ago I traveled to India for the 8th time. This was my 9th international trip going to spend time with amazing children and their caregivers. As I had conversations with people prior to the trip, asking when or why I was going, it was easy to slip into the mindset of “This is just what I do. I travel to India, Russia, and Kenya. I work for The Boaz Project. I care for orphans. No big deal.”

But I paused to truly question why do I do this? Many would consider eight trips more than sufficient (judging from the response I typically receive after telling people). I’m sure no one would tell me that I “haven’t gone enough” if I were to stop. In fact, many might applaud and say “job well done.”

But the question still lingered over my head, “why do I continue to go?” As I reflected on the plane ride, there were only two reasons. The first is this:

I never want a life where I am not involved in orphan care. 

Being 23 years old, it’s easy (in fact encouraged) to sit and dream of all the things I can do with my life. I could go back to school, I can go get a great paying job and work my way up in the company, I can plan for a future family, etc. But when I think of all these things, they are all fall short. If I could build my perfect life but be required to give up being involved in orphan care, it would be empty and meaningless and I wouldn’t want it. I don’t want a life in which I am too busy to take trips to visit these beautiful children. I don’t want a life where caring and advocating for orphans is not one of my top priorities.

If there’s ever a day that I have to stop taking trips, that will be the day that my heart completely shatters.

I say all of this knowing that orphan care and advocacy is not all rainbows and butterflies. In fact, most days have involved a deep pit of hard emotions and confusion as well as indescribable joy and the deepest sensation of peace and belonging.

But I know this to be true: no matter the pain of the emotions, no matter the physical toll of travel and new environments, I will always choose to show up for these orphans.

I also go back because this is where I watch miracles happen and God move in amazing ways.

I have seen incredible things happen that can only be done by God. I have seen families form. I have seen children who have come from unimaginable trauma begin to heal and become adults who lead and give back to their community. I have seen mountains be moved to meet the needs of an orphan.

Our recent short-term team in India

I never want to miss out on seeing God perform these miracles. I may never hear God audibly speak or watch water physically part, but I can see real miracles happening for the orphan everyday by being involved in orphan care.

I understand that not everyone can go, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be involved in caring for orphans in some way. And being involved–even in a little way–means living a life much more meaningful than living a life focused on self.

 

“Doing small things with great love,”
Taylor Pennycuff
Staff Writer
The Boaz Project, Inc.

2 Comments

  1. Amanda Reed

    Thank you for this testimony, and for reminding us that a life lived in service of others far outweighs a life lived for self. It is so easy to get caught up in the self serving life we are taught in the US. Praying for Boaz and your ministry to orphans of the world.:)

    Reply
  2. BILL Bonner

    Taylor, the Lord is and will continue to bless you and the orphans you care for far away. You are awesome and I am so proud of you. Thanks for loving and caring about God’s people.

    All my love to you and the kids,
    Bill

    Reply

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