As we have been moving through this series in Psalms, I have been so challenged by Pastor Andrew’s call to long and pray for our King to reign in our city. There is darkness here and we need His light to shine in.
Around the world, there are about 18 million orphans who have lost both parents and are living in orphanages or on the streets. In the U.S., about 400,540 children are living without permanent families in the foster care system. About 115,000 of these children are eligible for adoption, but nearly 40% of these children will wait over three years in foster care before being adopted. Over 5,000 children entered the North Carolina Foster Care system in 2013 and about 10% of those children were in Guilford County.
Obviously the need is there and it is huge. But orphan care is not about statistics– it’s about Jesus. The One who created all things loved us so much that, even when we pushed Him away and chased after money, sex and power, He still gave everything, even His very life, to bring us home and give us the right to be called His children. He loved us when we were alone in the world. And, in response to that love, that’s what Mercy Hill’s Orphan Care Ministry exists to do.
Maybe you’re thinking “Wait, I don’t think adoption is for me – I’m still in college” or “I’m a grandparent – I don’t want to be a parent again” or “I don’t think I have the money for that”. Well, maybe you’re right. Adoption may not be where God is leading you, but orphan care is something all followers of Jesus are called to (over 50 times in the Bible!) So we want to do this through adoption and foster care, but also through child advocacy, local and global missions and financial and emotional support for families in the process.
Our family is currently in the adoption process. It has not been an easy road, but it has been an undeniable picture of God’s faithfulness and fierce pursuit of us. He gave up everything to make us His own and in light of that, caring for the orphan around us is just a natural response.
There is great need around us. Remembering His great love for us, let’s let His light shine through us into the lives of the fatherless.
If you’re ready to learn how YOU can love the orphan and children in distress, begin by filling out the interest form below. Julianne Dager is a Covenant Member of Mercy Hill Church, the wife of Mercy Hill elder, Jeremy Dager, and champions our Orphan Care ministry. You can also keep up with our Orphan Care ministry with the Orphan Care Facebook page.