“What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone? Suppose you see a brother or sister who has no food or clothing, and you say, “Good-bye and have a good day; stay warm and eat well”—but then you don’t give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do? So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.“ – James 2:14-17.
We believe that only the church can truly change the reality of orphans around the world. First, we need to be educated on the needs both locally and globally. Then we need to move from learning to action. Whatever your skills and experience, and however much time you can offer, there are ways for you to make a difference. It is just a matter of where and what. I encourage you to suspend reality for a moment and see what is possible. But if we are to be the solution, we need more than good intentions.
Doing something in the area of orphans may cost you. Maybe some money, certainly some time, definitely some energy, and more than likely some emotion, convenience, comfort and normalcy. No one ever said, “Yes, I want to get involved, but I don’t want that involvement to change any part of my life. The reality is nothing will be the same, everything will change.
There will be costs, but it is important to stress that it is worth the costs because of the gains the child may receive. A child is always worth the process and more valuable than the costs. Always.
This is not for everybody, but maybe, just maybe it is for you. The Bible urges us to care for orphans, and provides some context as to why we should. In James 1:27, we are told that of all the measures by which our faith can be demonstrated, caring for orphans in their distress ranks among the highest and purest. “Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.” Why does God rank caring for orphans among the highest expressions of our faith? Perhaps because caring for orphans is not only one of the clearest expressions of the heart of God, but also a tangible demonstration of the Gospel. Or maybe it is a beautiful continuation of the redemption story of God and a vivid demonstration of the love of Jesus extended through us.
Let me end with this: If you’re someone who keeps wondering about it, talking about it and praying about it then you’re probably someone that just needs to do it…and most likely somebody that would be great at it. And I understand this post may not be written to your particular circumstances right now. No book, blog or article ever can address the uniquenesses of everyone’s situations. But please pray about the orphans in this world that need a family. We have a job to do, and that job is being God’s Plan A for people without families.
- What comes to mind when you hear the word “orphan?”
- Caring about orphans is a way to define your faith. Agree or disagree and why?
- “God sets the lonely in families.” (Psalm 68:6 NIV). How does He do that? What might your role be in His plan?
- What steps can you take to make your heart more like God’s with regard to orphans?