Tuesday, February 22, 2011

"A father of the fatherless...

**Warning...this post is long.
***Please take time to read the following.

Paul David Tripp, writing in the Journal of Biblical Counseling, recalled a scene he had witnessed more than once on his various travels to India. But this time, for some reason known only to the Holy Spirit, the Lord struck him with the gravity of it all at a deeper level than he'd ever experienced before.
Passing through New Delhi, in one of the most horrible slums in the world, he stood transfixed before a three-year-old boy leaning against the cot of his ailing, perhaps dying, mother. The boy's eyes were hollow, his stomach distended, his face fly-infested-the very picture of massive, helpless, noxious poverty.
The tears that streamed down Paul's cheeks in observing this tragedy were indeed the heartfelt evidence of his compassion. He longed to sweep this boy and his mother into his arms, away from these dreaded depths of sorrow and endless need.
But it was more than mere compassion he felt. It was an awareness that neither he nor this little boy had chosen their circumstances in life. The blessing of being raised among plenty, nurtured by godly parents, educated in quality schools, and given over to Christ at a young age began to roll over him in waves, even as he did his best to comfort and console the needy pair before him.
"You cannot explain the difference between that little boy and me by anything other than the Lord," he wrote. "Standing there in that slum, I felt all the complaints I had ever spoken as if they were a weight on my shoulders. I was filled with deeper gratitude than I think I have ever felt in my life."
Not long after he arrived back home, Paul was visiting with a church leader from India who had come to the States to study. In the midst of their conversation, he asked the man what he thought of Americans, to which his guest responded-in polite, Asian style- "Do you want me to be honest?"
"Yes, I do," Paul answered.
But who could really be ready for this: "You have no idea how much you have," the man said, "and yet you always complain."
We'd all have to agree, wouldn't we? At many levels, America can be rightly accused of gross ingratitude. But can the church and the Christians in America be accused of the same thing?
---taken from Choosing Gratitude by Nancy Leigh DeMoss

Wow! Just this past week, I had a tangible reminder of what Paul David Tripp is talking about in this story. I truly cannot find words to describe the emotions, convictions, and feelings that I felt within a few short hours.
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 I am as Paul said in Timothy, "...Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief." Guilty of ingraditude. Yet having so much.  Why do I complain? How can I complain?
  
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These precious children are orphans.  Every one. Along with 4,000 more in Uganda. They literally live by the grace and mercy of God, and the grace and mercy of others who will give.

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"Ugandan Thunder" came to perform at our church. Weeks ago, they announced the children would need 'host homes' for the night they performed. We hosted two. Absolutely one of the BEST decisions this family has or ever will make! I can only pray that we were as much of a blessing to them as they were to us.

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These children were the truest example of humbleness and gratefulness.

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The only thing I would change, would be that they could stay with us forever. Really. I would keep them. And if God saw fit, I would take the entire orphanage.

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Amy and Mother had two as well. Their story is just the same.

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This was quite possibly one of the hardest goodbyes I've ever said.

They left with their very few belongings. I was left with a broken heart. A broken heart from their leaving. A broken heart from conviction. Conviction of ingratitude.

"A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling." Psalms 68:5

Thank you Ugandan Thunder for a blessing our family will never replace!
*****Please, Please go to http://www.penniesforposho.org/ and be blessed!!!

6 comments:

Lori said...

They are precious! I have heard lots of stories of how these kids touched hearts while they were here! You know, I bet there is a way you could keep them forever - maybe you should look into that:) It looks like the kids had a wonderfully sweet time with you guys too!! Great post!

Beth said...

Lori---there absolutely is a way to keep them forever! All of these children can be adopted. It has been a prayer of mine for quite some time to know if it could ever be God's will for our family:)

KW said...

wow. This post made me cry Beth! Thank you for sharing.

Ketcham Family said...

adoption is so precious!!!
will be praying for you as you pray too!

jeff and rebecca said...

How wonderful! So glad you had this experience. I am sure you will never forget it and I believe that it is of most importance that our children see the love of God being shown to others also. You are doing EXACTLY what God wants you to with your precious children by putting HIS word into action and demonstrating to them how to do the same. What wonderful parents you both are. Oh and Nan and Mamy too! To God be the Glory!

Beth said...

Thank you Rebecca! That was encouraging! Like I said, it was one of the best opportunities our family has ever had! And I'm thankful for how much of a blessing God gave us from it~ Hey, have you or Jeff read "Radical" by David Platt? If not, I HIGHLY recommend it? I'm reading it now, and WoW! It's incredible! Love y'all!!!