Thursday, September 13, 2012

Greater Happiness

This past Sunday was not a typical Sunday for our family - not that there is a “typical” Sunday, but the idea that there might eventually be such a thing as a “typical” Sunday is a hopeful thought. I’m rambling already – not a good way to start this post.

So we, with the O’Leary family, set out to visit an orphanage that had come to the attention of Feeding The Orphans. They had been told that this home is in desperate need of help and could we please check it out. It was an adventure from the moment we set out.

We were told that the home is in Dodowa – a town neither our family nor the O’Leary’s had been to. We were told the name of the home and of the lady who runs it but we didn’t have a phone number or any description of where in the town the home is located.

When we arrived in Dodowa we prayed for guidance and began to ask people on the street if they new of this particular home or any orphanage in the town. We were met with puzzled faces and told we needed to look in the next town. One man gave a general description of where we might look. Our search in the suggested area was met with with the same response – try the next town.

We continued to drive and pray. Finally we found a man that offered some hope. He told us to drive a little further and look for the police station. While we were looking for the police station, the Spirit prompted Righ and Robin – that they should ask a child about the home instead of adults. Near the police station we found a young boy named Isaac who was walking into his church for the morning service. Robin asked if he know of the specific home we were looking for. He said yes and eagerly climbed in the car to show us the way. In just a couple of minutes we had arrived.

We are learning that the Lord loves to use children to accomplish His purposes! During our visit to this home He continued to used the children to lead and teach us.

We spent the next 3 to 4 hours worshiping with the children at the home and learning all we could about their needs. There are over 100 children in this home. I toured the boys room, which was very orderly and sleeps 51 boys ranging from just a few months old to their late teens. There were sixteen beds in their room. You do the math and then ask yourself (or your kids) why they have trouble keeping their rooms squared away.

Do you know what those children did while we spent an hour or so visiting with the mother of the house following the worship service? They washed our car! The white people from a distant land of luxury had come to visit the poor fatherless children crammed into a most simple home to see what help could be provided. The children did not beg. They didn’t ask us for anything. Instead of figuring out how they could get something from us, they give us a gift.

You see, our car wasn’t just a little dusty. It had rained two days prior and Robin was training the teachers at the boys school. She had to use 4-wheel drive down the 3/4 mile clay road in order to reach the school. Our car was caked with clay! Those children had to work very diligently to clean our car, but clean it they did! It looked great when we came out to see the proud smiling faces of those children.

They didn’t mope around because of the many things absent from their lives. They didn’t compare themselves to us and sulk because of “blessings” we have that they lack. They took what they had (water, soap and strength) and blessed those who didn’t deserve their kindness or need their assistance.

They taught us a powerful lesson: be thankful for what you have, not sad for what you lack – and use what have to bless others! Isn’t this what our Lord tried to teach his disciples when He asked them what they had on hand that could feed the more than 5,000 very hungry people all around them (Mark 6:38)? Jesus took the little they had, greatly increased it and blessed ALL the hungry people.

The needy children we met that Sunday taught us how we are truly much happier giving what we have than complaining about our lack.

“Remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive’ ” (Acts 20:35).


TheBowlingFamily said...

Wow....give me a lot to think about.

Annie said...

That was so beautiful. Thanks for posting! I can just imagine their beautiful faces! I will be praying for these children. When God sets us out on a journey to bless those in need, we are blessed and taught ourselves! (In fact, I just posted about a going out on a search to work to help someone and learning an important lesson as well!)