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Andy and Jill Lehman family
Thursday
Nov012012

Day 4 - Organizations

In honor of the upcoming Orphan Sunday (November 4th), we are hosting a Prayer Campaign to prepare our hearts and minds for the day set aside to honor the orphaned, knowing that PRAYER is the best place to start!

If you missed our previous days, check them out here: Day 1, Day 2, & Day 3

Today, we are going to dedicate our name to pray for orphan, adoption and foster care ministries all over the world. Whether it be your local DCFS office, an adoption agency or an in-country orphan care initiative, choose one to spend time praying for today. 

If you don’t know of any organizations, I encourage you to go to the Christian Alliance for Orphans website and look at their partner page.

Father God, today we pray for All God’s Children International and the work that they do to bring children into loving families. We pray that you will be each staff member locally and globally as they seek work and serve children. God, we ask that you would encourage and inspire their spirits when they feel discouraged and that you would be their place of refuge! Bless each child, family, and staff member today. It’s in Your name we pray, Amen.

Please post in the comment what organization you prayed for today…

Wednesday
Oct312012

Day 3 - The Church...That's You!

In honor of the upcoming Orphan Sunday (November 4th), we are hosting a Prayer Campaign to prepare our hearts and minds for the day set aside to honor the orphaned, knowing that PRAYER is the best place to start!

If you missed Day 1 & Day 2, check it out here and here

We’re thankful that you’ve tuned in for Day 3 of our prayer campaign as we pray for the Church, the body of Christ, and our role we have been given as believers.  Let’s peek again into His Word to see how our Father God has described this role….

Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows.” Isaiah 1:17

 “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.” James 1:27

 “When you gather the grapes in your vineyard, don’t glean the vines after they are picked. Leave the remaining grapes for the foreigners, orphans, and widows.” Deuteronomy 24:21

Learn. Seek. Help. Defend. Fight. Care. Do some of these words sound familiar from yesterday?  When we love like God loves and our hearts break for what breaks His, we, through His spirit, have the opportunity to be Jesus to a world in need.  Jesus himself prayed in John 17 that God’s love would be in us! Now, what are we going to do with that love? 

Today, please join us in praying for your church, your orphan ministry, and YOUR role in the body of Christ. 

Dear Father, Today I pray for myself as a church member.  I ask that You would lead me, that I might walk in obedience. Show me how to encourage my church family to care for the needs of orphans.

I pray for my church members and leaders.  Provide for our church’s orphan care ministry.  Please provide people, prayers, money, food and supplies to give the orphans all the care they need.

I pray that every member of my church would remember and acknowledge and praise you God because before the world was made, You loved us and chose us, and that Your unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into Your own family by bringing us to Yourself through Jesus Christ and that this gave You great pleasure. (Ephesians 1:3-5) In Jesus’ Name, Amen 

Today we ask that you put YOUR name in the comment so we can join you in prayer!

Tuesday
Oct302012

Praise God, OUR FATHER - Day 2

In honor of the upcoming Orphan Sunday (November 4th), we are hosting a Prayer Campaign to prepare our hearts and minds for the day set aside to honor the orphaned, knowing that PRAYER is the best place to start!

(If you missed yesterday, be sure to check out our prayer for the orphan that started out our week!)

Yesterday we talked about the orphan, how the numbers can overwhelm us, leaving us numb.  Today, we are going to talk about our FATHER God.

 

To start, let’s find out what He promises about His character through His Word…

“In you alone do the orphans find mercy.” Hosea 14:3

“The helpless put their trust in you. You defend the orphans. Lord, you know the hopes of the helpless. Surely you will hear their cries and comfort them. You will bring justice to the orphans and the oppressed, so mere people can no longer terrify them.” Psalms 10:14,17-18

Father to the fatherless, defender of widows—this is God, whose dwelling is holy. God places the lonely in families; he sets the prisoners free and gives them joy.” Psalms 68:5-6 

 “You must not exploit a widow or an orphan.  If you exploit them in any way and they cry out to me, then I will certainly hear their cry.” Exodus 22:22-23

No, I will not abandon you as orphans—I will come to you.” John 14:18

Isn’t that AMAZING? God, OUR Father, promises to defend, protect, hear, and comfort the fatherless.

Please join us in a prayer of praise to our loving, caring & compassionate Father God… 

Father God, THANK YOU for being our intimate Father. Thank you adopting ME into your family and treating me as your own. We are thankful that IN YOU ALONE the orphan will find mercy. We remind you of your promises—to set the lonely into families, to defend and give joy as well as justice to the orphan. Thanks for hearing our prayers and allowing them to come to your ears. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

We welcome you to include a prayer, verse or comment!

Monday
Oct292012

Praying for Orphans - Day 1

In honor of the upcoming Orphan Sunday (November 4th), we are hosting a Prayer Campaign to prepare our hearts and minds for the day set aside to honor the orphaned, knowing that PRAYER is the best place to start!

Sometimes it’s hard to put into words the plight of the orphan today. When we hear numbers like 153 million as the amount of orphans there are worldwide, it goes way beyond our understanding.  Or what about the number of orphans just in our country alone?  Over 107,000 children are waiting to be adopted from the US foster care system.* Again, we struggle to really comprehend what that looks like. Sometimes we become numb to the numbers as facts and stats go in one ear and out the other. 

Why don’t those numbers make us jump into action?  What do those numbers really mean?

They mean that ONE little girl in Guatamala has no parents to tuck her in at night…

..that ONE boy in Ukraine turns to drugs, alcohol, and violence because he has nowhere else to go…

...that ONE little boy in Africa starves because there isn’t enough food for his caretaker to feed him AND her own children.

 

The stories, situations, and sweet vulnerable children are endless.  Instead of being overwhelmed with the many, let’s commit to focus on ONE child.

To start our prayer campaign, will you join us today in praying for ONE child, ONE orphan that you know by name? 

If you don’t know any orphan by name, please join us in this prayer for Nellay, a sweet 12-year-old girl who is deaf and lives and attends school at Lifesong Liberia.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, we lift up Nellay to you. We pray for her health and safety. We pray that if it would be your will her hearing would be restored. Lord, please give her spiritual understanding and growth as she hears the gospel from our staff in Liberia. We pray for healing of her soul for the hardships she has seen and experienced at such a young age.  We thank you that YOU are her Father and that YOU have shown YOUR love to her. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

We encourage you to share the name of the child you prayed for in a comment so we can pray for them too!

*Source:  U.S. Government “5th Annual Report to Congress on Public Law 109-95” and affirmed by UNICEF

Thursday
Oct252012

School in Full Swing - Lifesong Ethiopia

We invite you to share a word of encouragement to our staff at Lifesong Ethiopia. To do so, please leave a comment or comment on our Facebook wall and it will be forwarded to our staff. Thank you in advance for your kind words of support! 

Please enjoy this update on Lifesong Ethiopia from Gary Ifft,

"After some hectic and stressful days, school has started up once again.  The last minute crush of registering students, hiring teachers and other staff, purchasing large quantities of food, purchasing and placement of desks and other furniture, in addition to trying to get the two new school buildings completed and ready for our occupancy is not something we looked forward to.  But we survived all that and school is in operation.  

With all three campuses combined we have 760 students.  And it seems we also have about 2,000 upset families because there was no room for their kids in our schools.  That is the problem (and the blessing) of having the best facilities, the best teachers, and the best reputation for many kilometers in any direction.  We've been threatened with lawsuits, tried to be bribed, been cried in front of more times than we could count, been cursed, and been accused by government officials of corruption simply because we didn't enroll someone's child.  Never did we suspect this was part of our job description!

In Adami Tulu we suddenly find ourselves with 300 students (these are included in the 760 above).  As opposed to the two Ziway schools, they don't yet have a nice modern feeding facility like both schools in Ziway have.  Our kitchen staff is doing an outstanding job with the facility they have to feed all these kids breakfast and lunch each day.  But for next year, it is definitely a priority to get them a dining facility equal to or better than the standard set in Ziway.

Enjoy these pictures..." 

 Our new two-story 14-room building at Ziway

 

 

 Morning flag pole ceremony at Ziway 

 

Kids eating lunch at Adami Tulu
 
Please keep our precious children at Lifesong Ethiopia in your prayers as they spend their time at school.