A Calling to Serve Orphans
As adoptive parents, we commonly receive comments from friends and strangers alike about our family. Some are encouraging, some are well-intentioned but poorly-delivered, and some require us to respond with grace.
But one phrase we’ve heard all too often from believers is, “I’d love to care for orphans one day, but I’m just not in a place right now where I feel called to adopt.” And while we agree that adoption is a calling, we believe that the Scriptures don’t assume that adoption is the only way to care for the fatherless.
In Psalm 68:5, David praises the Lord as the “Father of the fatherless and protector of widows.” Throughout the Scriptures, God’s heart for the orphans and widows describes His goodness, but it also describes the work He calls His people to do. So assuming that adoption is the only means to serve orphans prevents us from being “doers of the word, and not hearers only" (James 1:22). After all, James’ prescription for pure and undefiled religion is not the action of adoption, but “to visit orphans and widows in their affliction.”
Orphan Sunday is an annual reminder to churches across the world of this call to serve these children. Ultimately, it is a reminder that caring for orphans is about making disciples. But making disciples requires action, and action requires preparation. So, how do we prepare?
Through prayer, we come to God on behalf of orphans and widows and it prepares our hearts to follow God by taking action. If you’re not sure where to begin, we recommend checking out this 40 day prayer guide.
As you pray, consider volunteering your time to serve foster children and families. The Second Story (thesecondstory.org) is a newly-formed coalition of local churches in Collin County working to meet the needs of foster children in our area. Prestonwood Baptist Church (Plano campus) is hosting an expo for The Second Story on November 14, which is a great first step to getting involved. Register for the event here.
This year, we will observe Orphan Sunday as a church on November 22. We’ll have opportunities for you to ask questions, learn, and take action to care for orphans. Begin praying now about ways that you can get involved!