Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Repairer of Broken Walls

I must admit that I have not exactly been a tower of strength when it comes to this Mulligan Stew Giveaway.  In all honesty, I've been a bit of a quivering vine.

When I first started planning this giveaway, I was thinking that my friends might donate about 10, maybe 20 prizes at the most.  Imagine my surprise when they offered that many within the first 3 hours.

And the offers just kept coming.  The generosity of so many friends really warmed my heart.  Each time I opened another e-mail I from another generous donor, I just wanted to just cry my eyes out.  Every single gift was offered with the utmost love, care, concern and compassion for the orphan.

However, along with our donors' great generosity came a great responsibility.  The reason so many people offered giveaway prizes, rather than simply donating their money directly to the orphans themselves, was that they hoped that a big giveaway would multiply their donations.  Rob and I definitely didn't want to disappoint them.  We had high hopes that this giveaway would honor our donors' generosity by multiplying their gifts twofold, fivefold or even tenfold.

Partly to avoid disappointing our donors, we have been careful not to state any specific fundraising goals.  We've stayed safe and careful, keeping our boat near the shallow end of the lake.  We haven't said that we would LOVE to see every kid on our list add at least $1,000.00 to his or her grant account.  We haven't said that we would LOVE to see each family on our list add at least twice that much to its adoption fund.  We haven't mentioned our high hopes and dreams for our Lost Boys, or for the Heim family.  We haven't mentioned our hope that families would step forward to adopt at least some of these children during the course of this giveaway.  To state those goals would be daring, and I am not the least bit daring.

 Even to whisper a goal would be to admit that I am terrified of failure.  Just what I shared above - just the wishful thinking that I carefully DIDN'T share before- puts the goal for this Giveaway at around $30,000.00.  

That number shocks me!  Completely turns me into jello on the floor.

Do you see why my boat is still hovering in the shallow water near the shore?

But then I remember the pictures that I posted yesterday....


And I remember this poor boy - one of our Lost Boys who has already lost his chance to live outside of a dreary mental institution, ever, for the rest of his life....

This older boy sat all alone at Aaron's institution all day, every day, day after lonely day.  With NOTHING to do.  And the reality is that  HE WILL BE TRANSFERRED to a permanent adult mental institution in just a short time.  I can only guess how much worse his life may be when he arrives at that awful place.  This poor boy has already lost his chance - he isn't available for adoption.

But Heath and Hanson are available. It's not too late for them.

And I KNOW that this poor boy's miserable fate is exactly what awaits poor, precious Laurel, Bernadette and Harmony in just a few short months UNLESS WE HELP THEM.

We saw the reality of that fate with our own eyes.

And in light of that reality - the horror of what they face if someone, somewhere doesn't intervene - $1,000.00 in each of their grant accounts doesn't seem like too much to ask.  For kids with so much potential - for Igor, Victoria, Jack, Emmitt, Harmony, Heath and Hanson - $1,000 per child doesn't seem like too much to ask.

And for the families who are adopting from Katie's orphanage, for all of those poor babies who have been hanging on by a thread for so long - for Keith, Teddy, Val, Steward, Angelina, Kelton, Teagan, Ian, Kolina, Makayla, Lilliana, Pam and Butler - $2,000 per family doesn't seem like too much to ask.  

And for the Lost Boys.  And for the Heim family - for Maria, Vika, Alina and Sasha.

And for families to step forward. 

Oh where is my life preserver in this boat??

I sat in church on Sunday wrestling with the enormity of  asking for $30,000.00.  I sat, wrestled and prayed.

And then our worship leader stood up and shared this passage from the Book of Isaiah....

“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: 
to loose the chains of injustice 
   and untie the cords of the yoke, 
to set the oppressed free 
   and break every yoke? 
Is it not to share your food with the hungry 
   and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter— 
when you see the naked, to clothe them, 
   and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?"

I  began to weep.  Right there in church, during our time of worship, the tears started flowing.  

 "And if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry 
   and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, 
then your light will rise in the darkness, 
   and your night will become like the noonday. 
The LORD will guide you always; 
   he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land 
   and will strengthen your frame. 
You will be like a well-watered garden, 
   like a spring whose waters never fail. 
Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins 
   and will raise up the age-old foundations; 
you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, 
  Restorer of Streets with Dwellings."

- Isaiah 58

I cried, prayed and rejoiced.  

What a picture: to be a Repairer of Broken Walls.

The broken children across the ocean are being repaired because of us.  We are repairers, you and me.  We are dreamers who dare to hope that our crumpled little $5 bills matter.  They do: If we spend ourselves on behalf of those who are desperate, then God will strengthen us. Water our gardens.  Fill our need to the fullest, so that we lack for nothing.

Do I dare ask for $30,000?  For $40,000?  For $50,000??

Do I dare to push my old boat out into the deep waters?


Can we raise $1,000 for each child?  Can we raise $2,000.00 for each family from Katie's orphanage?  Can we dream big for Maria and the Heim family?  Can we provide shoes, clothes, medicine, diapers and gifts for the Lost Boys?

It isn't too much to ask for the kids.  Is it too much for us?


So far, our Mulligan Stew Giveaway has raised $5280.46. 86 people have donated.


Our prize list now includes NINETY great items.  We'll give them all away as soon as the dust settles on April 1!!

Click THE MULLIGAN STEW LINK HERE to see all of the wonderful prizes that our donors have offered.


"A Common Stew for an Uncommonly Good Cause!"



  1. I'm not sure how this works but I went to Lina's chip in and made a small donation. If I didn't do it right for the Stew that's okay, the donation was made. Have a good day and don't give up.

  2. We gave $10 to the Heim family and $10 to Bernadette. I also FBed.

  3. We gave $10 each to the Heim family and Bernadette and FBed.

  4. Julia, we donated $20 total, 10 to the family bringing home the 4 children and 10 to lina. I wish it could be more, but we are scraping to bring home our boy too!

  5. Donated $200 to Masha and another $300 total to other families.

  6. Your daily posts are an encouragement for us to keep giving. We have added to our donations...$35 to Harvest International by way of a check. 4 of our 5 blessings are boys and it just breaks my heart to think of all those Lost Boys. We added Heath to our Homeschool World Prayer Map. We can't wait to move him to the "Rescued" section. Praying a family commits to him during this give-away!
    The Ristow7

  7. Nothing's too big for God! I am praying that the amount brought in by this blows that little boat right out of the water!

  8. I will share on my FB! Love sweet Steph and Lina!!!

  9. Julia, I was feeling "safe and careful" in not telling you that I was praying for this giveaway to raise $30,000 - $40,000. I didn't want you to be disappointed or for me to look like a fool for hoping for that much if it didn't come through. And now I don't know if I should tell you that I am praying for $50,000 - $60,000 because I want to see the Heim family get their full $35,000 (and even more) and Harmony's grant to catch up to Bernadette & Laurel's amount. If God doesn't answer my prayers, (our joint prayers for these important needs), He doesn't - it is His choice. But as His child I'm going to ask Him anyways. He might have a different timing on things, but I am hoping these specific children and families will be mightily blessed financially right now. We sang on Sunday a beautiful song that starts "God is good, God is good..." and I believe that is true. I could see Him giving way more than what I ask because He is good and far more compassionate and generous than we are. I can't wait to see what He does.

  10. Tammy - I am praying with you! Praying to a God who doesn't mind that we ask for the impossible when the impossible is about justice and mercy and love.

  11. I Julia,

    I donated 10 to Maria, and 25 to Victoria.


  12. Not sure if my comment went through or not. If it did, please disregard this one! =) I donated $100 to the Heim family and $50 each to the Booth and Carpenter families. Will also share on FB. Be strengthened in faith the God WILL provide the increase! Here is a sister standing alongside of you in intercession! Be blessed.


Loving words from kind people make our hearts glad!