Jean often says, “Our family just keeps getting bigger and bigger!” Amen! Presently, we have over 20 kids and 2 babies at the children’s village and hundreds more being cared for in the feeding program, preschool, and extended outreach ministry. As the family grows, everything else seems to grow: the joys, the triumphs, the needs, the problems, etc. As in any big family, there is never a dull moment and everyday, new adventures!
As the days go on, we are learning more and more about the beauty of God’s family. There are no orphans in God’s family. Only sons. Only daughters. Each one deeply loved and wondrously healed. With our Heavenly Daddy leading and guiding the family, we receive His full inheritance and His promises on earth as it is in heaven. Our precious family in South Africa is not there yet…but we are in pursuit! We have seen so many orphaned children with tragic pasts come to Jesus and find healing in His presence. We have watched the orphan spirit dissolve away as a child embraces his or her place in God’s family! Just two weeks ago, as one of our newest girls was dropped off by Social Services, the social worker wrote on her intake file, “She refused to do dishes. Therefore, she was not wanted in the previous home.” What? Hounding the social worker for more details, we learned of the girl’s tragic history of sexual and emotional abuse (a little more important than not washing dishes!) Head and eyes downcast, the young girl did not want to talk at first. We watched as her new foster mother embraced her and began the process of making a genuine heart connection with the beautiful girl. Slowly, this precious, wounded young girl opened her heart. Within an hour, we saw the beauty of family at work.
We are enraptured by the splendor of God’s family–the Body of Christ. For the believer, no matter where he or she goes in the world, God has a family waiting, even more so, God has a family longing to grow! Each and every person in the Body is needed to fulfill His great command and commission (1Cor. 12:12-13; Matt. 22: 37-39, Matt. 29: 18-20). The holidays are an amazing time to reflect about this truth. We want to encourage you to embrace this holiday season with a renewed passion for family. God has given us such an amazing, yet diverse family! In South Africa, we have so many cultures coming together- siSwati, Afrikaans, British, American, and Mozambican. Please know, you are a vital part! You are such an awesome blessing to us and we pray for you often! Until we join the greatest family reunion in heaven, may we pursue the fullness of the Father’s heart and see more and more children enter into His eternal family!!!