Orphan care is a global cause that is very dear to my heart. Orphans are oftentimes forgotten, but the least of these are so very important in the eyes of the Father. Your heart may or may not be called to adoption, but all Christians are called to care for orphans in one form or another. Jesus demands this of His followers all throughout the Bible. Until our family followed the path of adoption, I truly had no idea how much is written about orphan care throughout the Bible. Orphans ARE God’s heart.
“Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed.” Psalm 82:3
“Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unsustained by the world.” James 1:27
“Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause.” Isaiah 1:17
“And the King will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.'” Matthew 25:40
“I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” John 14:18
“You shall not mistreat any widow or fatherless child.” Exodus 22:22
“Cursed be anyone who denies justice to the foreigner, the fatherless, and the widow.” Deuteronomy 27:19
“When you are harvesting your crops and forget to bring in a bundle of grain from your field, don’t go back to get it. Leave it for the foreigners, orphans, and widows. Then the Lord your God will bless you in all you do.” Deuteronomy 24:19
“This is what the Lord says: Do what is just and right. Rescue from the hand of his oppressor the one who has been robbed. Do no wrong or violence to the alien, the fatherless or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place.” Jeremiah 22:3
“Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless, the alien, or the poor. In your hearts do not think evil of each other.” Zechariah 7:10
There are many more examples of the Father’s heart for the orphan. It is clear throughout the Bible that Jesus expects us to care for orphans and widows. We are His hands and feet. How we are called to do that looks different for everyone … adoption is certainly not the only way to love the orphan. Here are several ways you can get involved in orphan care that don’t involve adoption:
1. Pray for orphans around the world. If you’d like to pray for a specific orphan, email me and I’d be honored to share information about a child so you can pray.
2. Make a donation to one of the many organizations that care for orphans and/or widows. Please email me for some suggestions if you need help.
3. Sponsor an orphan or child in serious danger of becoming an orphan through Compassion or World Vision around the world. A few organizations that work in China specifically are Lifeline Children’s Services, Love Without Boundaries, Show Hope, New Day Foster Home, Shepherd’s Field, and CCAI.
4. Demonstrate the love of a family by hosting an orphan in your home for several weeks through organizations like New Horizons, Welcoming Angels, or adoption agencies.
5. Support a local adoptive family through prayer, helping with babysitting, or taking them meals.
6. Participate in adoption fundraisers and give of your time or money to help bring orphans home to their families. This requires such a small amount of time or money on your part, but is such a blessing to families who want to adopt, but may need some financial help.
7. Support a local foster family through prayer, donations of children’s items, or respite care.
8. When shopping or buying gifts, shop with a purpose by patronizing organizations or businesses that donate a portion of income to orphan and/or widow care. A few are The Sparrow Fund, Orphan Wares, 100 Cameras, The Lulu Tree, Show Hope, The Lucas Legacy, 147 Million Orphans, Amazima, Oneless Ministries, Junk Posse, Ordinary Hero, Lifesong for Orphans, Haiti Poverty, Ornaments 4 Orphans, Orphan Card Shop, and Noonday.
9. Host an Orphan Sunday event at your church and pursue starting an orphan ministry.
10. Advocate for orphans to find their families using social media connections. Only your time is needed!
11. Visit orphans around the world with ACT or Visiting Orphans. After having the honor of participating in one of these trips, I can promise it will be life changing for you.
12. Mentor a local child in foster care. Contact your local foster care program to find out details.
13. Use your professional skills to love the orphan – photography, coaching, hair cuts, dentistry, etc. Think outside the box and consider how your skills may be of use.
14. Consider becoming a Safe Family for emergency help to families in need to prevent more children from becoming orphans.
15. Become a foster parent.
If your heart is stirred for orphan care, but you just aren’t sure how to get involved, please get in touch with me. I would be thrilled to brainstorm with you and come up with some ideas!
I have posted these slides before, but they are profound every time I read them: