There are 163 million orphans in the world.
What exactly is an orphan? Orphan: A child who has lost both parents, or a child who has lost one parent but is unable to be cared for by the living parent. Interesting right? A child who has lost one parent can be considered an orphan.
Most of you may know this, but some may not, my father died when I was 7 years old. My mother and father were separated when I was 6 months old, so therefore I never grew up with a father in my house.
I am blessed to have been born in America where my mother was able to lovingly and safely raise 3 children on a teachers salary. She did an amazing job but If I had been born in almost any other country, I would have most likely been one of those statistics. One of those 163 million. How do I know this? Because I have seen it, over and over again. A father who has died from AIDS, been killed or has just disappeared…leaving three children behind and a mother who is struggling to provide. She cannot work because there is no daycare…she is forced to take her children out of school because she can no longer pay the school fees, uniform fees, book fees etc. I have seen this all over the world and most recently I’ve seen it in Haiti.
Maybe some of you have experienced the loss of a parent at a young age. Do you realize that if you were born in Haiti you would most likely have been dropped off at an orphanage because your mother was loving you the best she knew how and she thought that if you were in an orphanage at least you’d have a CHANCE at going to school and getting fed. But some are even less fortunate than this, like Michaelle, her mother died and her father didn’t want her. So he literally abandoned her in Carrefour. To know that SO many children are left to fend for themselves is so incredibly hard to comprehend.
For me, even the thought of all this is mind blowing. It calls me to action in a way that won’t ever leave me.
Over and Over, the Lord calls us to Fight for the Fatherless. Even if we are not Fatherless ourselves, God calls us to take care and protect the fatherless.
“…the fatherless and the widow who are within your towns, shall come and eat and be filled, that the Lord your God may bless you in all the work of your hands that you do…” Deuteronomy 14:29
Today I walked through the city of Gressier during the morning specifically when all kids who were in school would be there, meaning I saw the kids who are unable to go to school. To be honest I thought I would have another “Michaelle moment” where I just knew I had to take action right away with that one orphan But sadly, I was completely overwhelmed- in fact I’m almost in tears now thinking of what I saw. TONS of children not in school.
The first young boy I ran across was probably 6 and carrying a 2×4 that was at least 12 feet long, on HiS HEAD. He was struggling Alot but wouldn’t let us help. That began the breaking of my heart today. Would you let your 6 year old child, nephew or even any child carry this- for miles? No parent would.
After this we went to the market and saw TONS of children selling all sorts of things. Many of them lethargic just working like robots. No smiles at me (the blanc) even until I specifically looked into their eyes said hello and then told them they were beautiful. Heart broken even more.
Like I’ve said before, Education is the KEY to the future for Haiti. if these kids don’t go to school they dont learn how to write, read, spell, add. Anything! Some of these kids have families but are too poor to go to school but MANY more are just like Michaelle. Orphans here with no one who will invest in them. No one who will give them a Chance. No one who will lay down their life here on earth for them. And that is where WE come into the picture. The BODY OF CHRIST. This is OUR Responsibility to FIGHT for these children. God has called us ALL to fight for them.
My prayer tonight is that you see how YOU have a role in this. If caring for orphans and children was just “some peoples calling” then why did God call the Body of Christ to fight for the fatherless over and over in the bible? It is EVERYONES responsibility. And for me, I think about it from the mindset of being a fatherless child. Would someone fight for me? I hope so.
PS. This was written via iPhone so sorry if there are spelling errors, rambling etc. Thanks for reading.