The following story is written by an East-West national partner in Central Asia.
My family and I have been in our current city since 2008 and have tried—and failed—at so many projects. Sure, folks have come to faith. Sure, we have a handful of groups. But we had more projects than we could keep up with.
We tried prayer walks – but it is bitterly cold here in the winter. We have tried so many different ways to focus our actions. People came to us, then fell away. And my attempts at business were much the same—flare up and fizzle out. All of this wasn’t helping my marriage much either.
Then this year, the Great I AM challenged me to simply focus on Him—to simply praise and worship Him and seek His heart.
My wife and I started doing just that. Then our kids joined in, and now everyone in our groups have been seeking His face. That’s when God laid one passage of scripture on our hearts and the need to focus on widows and orphans.
“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” –James 1:27
Rather than running off as I am prone to do, we asked God to open the way. Then a buddy of mine from the government offices asked me, “What do you think about helping orphans?”
I asked for more details.
“Well, we have a number of older orphans who probably aren’t going to be adopted, and they are certainly not ready to live on their own. I have this idea, but the boss is skeptical. My idea is to ask good folk—people like yourself—to commit to a weekly mentoring of one teen for the next year. This would be as a volunteer, of course, since we have no budget. You’d just talk with them, include them in family activities if there is something going on, let them know about life, and about family. What do you think? What do you think my chances are of finding volunteers?”
I immediately thought of all the volunteers tied to our groups. This was our new project.
We have to be cautious in this endeavor as we cannot pressure children about faith, but if our lives match our commitment to The Word, then our faith will be seen and seeds will be planted. This might not be all our Father has in mind, but it certainly is an awesome start.
Now, I wonder, what does He have planned for us and the widows?
Praise for such guidance and direct answer to prayer. Please pray for the faithful of this northern city as they are committed to living out true religion. Pray they will be true to their faith as well as respectful of government requirements. Pray that the orphans involved will see love and faith and choose to be part of that.