Thursday, December 2, 2010

Stemming the Tide

    There's a story I read when I was growing up called "Hans Brinker or the Silver Skates."  I loved that book.  Inside that story was another story of a little boy who walks by a dyke and sees a hole in the side.  He sticks his finger in the hole, staying there all night to keep his town from being flooded.  In the morning the townspeople discover the boy and work together to stem the tide.

    On Monday Andrea Roberts spent the day listing onto the Reece's Rainbow website 100 more little ones with Down Syndrome.  When I saw that news I felt washed over with weariness.  Here I am - hollering for Gavin, Brady and Heath in my tiny corner in the world - holding my little finger in the dyke and 100 more children come flooding over the walls.  What does my finger matter in the whole scheme of things?  How can I even think that what I do makes a bit of difference?

I despair.

    It's too big for me.  I feel like throwing in the towel.  Giving up on keeping my hole plugged.  I've got my child.  I did my job.  Let me go back to normal. 

    To be honest - that is what the church as a whole has done.  Given up.  The church has seen the huge need and decided that what needs to be done to fix the problem of orphans in the world is to forget the individual orphan and instead to focus on the 'social' ills that cause the orphan problem.  It's become a license to do nothing. 

     I've been in a lot of churches in the last 48 years of my life (yes, I am that old).  I've heard a lot of sermons.  Lots.  The honest, sad truth - Rarely - rarely - have I ever heard a sermon about the orphan.  Almost never.  How unbelievably sad.  I hate to write that on my blog because I love the church.  I love my faith.  I am a Christian and I am not ashamed.  But it is the truth.

     So I stand here, with my finger in a dyke, wondering what good I am doing as I watch the water pouring over the sides.  There are millions and millions of orphans.  I don't even want to post the number because it is too discouraging.  Too big.  What difference does my little finger make?

     To God - all the difference in the world.  To God - my little finger matters greatly.  It may be little and I may not even be plugging the hole properly and I may even have water leaking out around me but to God - my finger in that dyke is of great value. 

     And I am not alone.  Nope.  The church is around me.  I know this.  Maybe not the church proper but the real church - the individuals - those driven by the Holy Spirit - they are definitely around me.  All I have to do is read my comments section to see that mine isn't the only finger in the dyke.    All I have to do is walk into the grocery store and have someone come up and tell me that they are reading our blog, praying for the Lost Boys, cheering us on.  All I have to do is walk into my Homeschooling Co-op and see that ours isn't the only child saved.  All I have to do is hunt the internet on adoptions and see that there are hundreds, thousands of other Christian families standing next to me, stemming the tide.  All I have to do is open my e-mail and discover that I am surrounded.  There were thousands of bowed heads behind us when we stood before a judge back in September.  I am discovering that there are even more bowed heads standing with us as we fight to stem the tide to rescue the least of these. 

     Just yesterday I was given a gift by one of those who is standing with us to stem the tide.  Someone who chooses to be nameless.  Someone who has put in the mail - an iPad - a gift to help raise money for a little boy in a far away land - Gavin.  Sweet Gavin.  Another finger in the dyke.  I cried when I found out what they were doing.  I panicked too.  I am just one small person.  I am not good at fundraisers and raising money.  What if it bombs?   Yuck!  Oh me of little faith.  Truly little.  I'm struggling on Monday with whether my finger matters and yesterday someone sends me an iPad to GIVE-AWAY for Gavin.

     Our fingers do matter and saving one child is of great worth to God.  Beyond measure.  Gavin matters to the Creator of the Universe.  He matters to me.  He matters to my anonymous friend who cares deeply that he find a family.  Soon.  Gavin turns six in just a few months.  He faces transfer any day.  He needs a family quickly.  

Please stand with me.  I am putting another chip-in for the iPad.  Here's how it is going to work - If you make a donation to either of Gavin's chip-ins before December 19 - your name will be entered in a drawing.  The more you give, the more times your name will be entered.  Those who have already given to Gavin WILL have their names entered into the Give-away.  You have not been left out of this!

$5 = 1 entry
$20 = 5 entries
 $35 = 9 entries
$50 = 13 entries
 $75 = 19 entries
$100 = 25 entries
$150 = 40 entries

On December 19 we will draw a name for the iPad.  I will then ship it to the winner Priority mail so that it will arrive by Christmas! 

**If you Donate 35.00 or more before December 15th, you will also receive an Angel Tree Ornament with Gavin's picture!

Please help spread the word - Help us raise money for Gavin.  Help us find a family for this sweet little boy.  

What we do matters - maybe not to the rest of the world - but in the eyes of the Lord - Priceless.

Matthew 25: 40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’


  1. I wrote about the Titanic in reference to orphans and you write about stemming the tide... Coincidence? God is working, God is working...

    Love wins,
    Renee Tam

  2. I certainly understand how you are feeling. It never feels like it's enough, no matter what we do. But, I'm starting to realize that this is exactly how God wants me to it's not enough...because as long as I feel that way, I will keep talking, keep praying, keep doing something as I strive to find "enough", and that's EXACTLY what He wants...for us to keep doing.

  3. Julia,

    remember when the apostles came to Jesus and said: Let the people go home, they are hungry. There were 10.000. And he said: "Feed them yourselves."

    And there was a little boy who had two loafs of bread and 5 fishes which he offered. And Jesus took these, blessed them, prayed to the father and had the food distributed. We know the result.

    You and your husband bring 18 Dollars for Gavin. Lots of prayer, Time. Honesty. Courage to share your daily life and the things you saw over there. Many more things - you know them better than I do.

    Someone else brings and iPad.

    Many people who read your blog but never comment might contribute too, without you knowing.

    Let us bring to Jesus what we have, no matter how small. He will bless it. And assure that it is enough for many.


  4. Julia, God has seen your faith and obedience and honored it! I'm blessed to see that . . . and now I want to tell you something that I think will bless you . . . as you know we made a small donation to Gavin even though we are feverishly fundraising for our own sweet child who we are trying to bring home to live with us . . . I think that was yesterday--and today God provided the exact same amount !!!! back to us when someone slipped my hubby a bill and said, "I heard you are trying to fundraise. . . " Chills, not??! God is good--He sees and KNOWS when we are doing WHAT WE CAN.

  5. Please don't ever feel like giving up. Your words speak so loudly and clear. God has sent you to be the voice of these little children. I am sure you have reached many hearts, including mine. Your finger in the hole makes a big difference especially to these little boys. Stepping out in faith is what He wants us to do. Look where you sit now with your son and the steps you took to get him. NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR THE ALMIGHTY ONE! Keep writing...People are hearing you and God sees what you are doing that is Right in His eyes! We will continue to keep everyone in prayers, including their future parents!

  6. Your post reminds me of this story I heard along time ago that has helped me a lot through life..

    by Loren Eiseley (1907 - 1977)

    Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work.

    One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked faster to catch up.

    As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all. The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.

    He came closer still and called out "Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?"

    The young man paused, looked up, and replied "Throwing starfish into the ocean."

    "I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" asked the somewhat startled wise man.

    To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in, they'll die."

    Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, "But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can't possibly make a difference!"

    At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said, "It made a difference for that one."

  7. I shared this! Praying for Gavin.

  8. I have been reading your blog for a few weeks now and it is so encouraging to me. It makes me anxious to be able to adopt but me and my husband are too young yet...In the meantime I want to do everything I can to help these children.
    I am a Christmas Warrior for Garrett but I too am horrible at fundraising and not very crafty. After seeing your post, I decided to try doing a give away as well. I just wondered how you know how much each person donates. Do you just have them tell you and trust that they are honest? Or is there a way to know? Any thoughts that would help me the get giveaway started would be awesome :)
    Thank you so much for your encouragement and honesty and all you are doing for Gavin and the Lost Boys.

  9. I think it's so great that God brought an amazing fundraiser to a non-fundraising person's cause. :) Although I'm not sure I want an ipad I'm going to contribute anyway! Thanks for advocating for Gavin and ALL the others!!!

  10. I thought you and Renee were in cahoots today with the similar posts....

  11. You got such a way with words, it´s amazing. I have been reading your blog for a long time now and it´s amazing to see the heart you have for these boys, for these children. I pray they may all be saved but please keep up your effort you are really making a difference in these boys lives.

  12. I want to add to the starfish story. It always ends with the line, "Made a difference to that one" but I think what happened after that is equally important. The wise man was overcome with emotion, realizing the significance of it all. The TWO of them then spent the next several hours throwing starfish back into the water. TOGETHER.
    Other people will hear your cry and join with you. We can't save them all, that's not our job. But we can join together and fight for those that we can! It was through someone else's blog that we came to the decision to adopt Joshua. A blog from someone I didn't even know. You never know who is listening! :)

  13. Great post and I often feel the same way. The internet has been a wonderful way to connect with others who feel the way I do about orphans and adopting.

  14. You are so blessed to have a husband who supports your calling to adopt, I pray daily that God will soften my husband's heart towards adoption, especially special needs adoption. He is very against it right now. Almost all of our tithe goes to orphan rescue, esp through RR, but I still feel like you do daily, hourly. "God is at work" is my mantra, "I need to WAIT on the LORD, His timing is perfect and my impatience is not worthy of His sacrifice"---that's what I tell myself. However my knees have rug burn on them continually :) Keep at it, life is a marathon...on a very cross country trail. Lean on Jesus, prayers for your run. \0/

  15. I agree 100%, churches don't talk about orphans -I think because it's easyer to walk away then help.
    Can you please place your fundraiser their too:
    I posted that on my facebook page.



Loving words from kind people make our hearts glad!