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Andy and Jill Lehman family

This I believe: Blessed to Bless

Jessica Metcalfe, a high school student in Illinois was instructed to write a paper for her English class entitled, "This I Believe".  We were so impressed at the truth that she spoke on why many of us have been blessed by our Father God, that we HAD to share it. Please read and enjoy, praying that this truth would sink into each of our hearts stirring us into action...

Blessed to Bless: This I Believe

This morning, I woke up in a comfy bed, took a hot shower, ate a good breakfast, chose what to wear from a closet full of clothes, said hi to my family, walked to school, and talked to my friends.  In Russia another teenage girl woke up this morning, but she has nothing… only herself and the rags on her back. Prostitution is her only option.  In Kenya, there is a beautiful baby boy lying abandoned on the side of a dirt road.  In Guatemala, a four year-old’s parents died today.  In India, a girl was abducted and nobody noticed.  Why?  Why was I born to parents who care for me?  Why do I have clothes to wear and food to eat?  Why do I have opportunities and freedoms to learn and speak and think?

In the world today, there are over 143 million orphans.  Slavery and trafficking exist in almost every country.  There are people who feel hunger, poverty, pain, isolation and rejection every single day.  So many people have absolutely nothing.  From Germany to Jamaica, China to Brazil, South Africa to Eureka, Illinois, people suffer.  It is there, and it is real.

My brother’s birth parents died when he was five years old.  His uncle dropped him off in an orphanage at the age of seven, where he lived for two years.  He was separated from his siblings, and even the clothes he wore were not his own.  As our family went through the adoption process, my eyes were opened to the things happening around me.  It turned out that the happy little world I lived in was the exception, not the rule.  The hugeness and desperation of the things in the world astounded me.  Why did I have so much, when others had so little? 

This is what I have come to realize.  I have not been blessed because of me… I do not deserve all that I have, and it is not based on anything I have done.  I have also not been blessed for just myself.  I have been blessed so that I can go and be a blessing to others.  Whether that comes in the form of making advent calendars to raise money for orphans, helping someone whenever I have the power to do so, praying, or just smiling at someone to brighten their day, I can be a blessing to those around me.  God has given me much, and I can and should give to others because of what I have been given.  I have been blessed to bless.  This I believe. 

written by Jessica Metcalfe


Family Friday: "We know God called us to adopt..."

Steven and Tiffany could list 78 reasons why they decided to grow their family through adoption.  For several years, they traveled as road directors for an international children’s choir.  They felt God working on their hearts as they were “Mom” and “Dad” to the children in the choir, many of which were orphans from India, Uganda, Brazil, Philippines, Nepal, and Myanmar. The Lord used these children to cultivate in them a heart for the orphan. 

As most adoption stories go, Steven and Tiffany's journey had some unexpected turns and surprises. But through it all, they felt God's presence and peace as they persued the adoption of their daughter Ayla from China. Thanks to The Church of Brook Hills Adoption Fund, Steven and Tiffany were given a matching grant through Lifesong to help with some of the fiancial costs. Listen in to hear more...

Lifesong provided a way for people to give tax-deductible gifts towards our adoption. That, combined with the unique opportunity to have their gifts matched really motivated people to contribute.

Lifesong also provided us with a unique opportunity to share God’s heart for the orphan. I’ll be honest, at first we weren’t too excited to have to write support letters and ask for money, but we are so grateful for it now. We had an opportunity to share how adopting a little girl from China was a small picture of how God has adopted us eternally. What a platform Lifesong provided for us to share with lost family members.

We know God called us to adopt, and we could trust Him to provide for our needs. We are so grateful that He used Lifesong in a huge way to do that!

-Steven & Tiffany


Celebrating Through Service -- Lifesong Zambia

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

We are blessed to share this update from Lifesong Zambia from missionary Shane McBride,

"Often times Independence Day is celebrated with fireworks, picnics, and apple pies. Well, here in Zambia on October 24th, we are using the holiday as a time of reflection. We are blessed beyond measure and our students know this.  

So, how will we celebrate? Through service. Our students will be going into their community and serving the elderly and widows. It will be a week long activity of shoveling, mending roofs, cutting grass (not with a mower, but by hand with a slasher), fetching water from the wells, picking up trash, and volunteering at the two local medical clinics. 


It's a celebration of both Zambia's Independence and Christ's provision as He Brings Joy and Hope to these children, and through these children INTO the community.  

 Also, please remember to pray for our Grade 7 students, from Oct 30 - Nov 2, as they take their BIG GRADE 7 TEST.  We are very thankful that the pre-exams went very well. Able, below, finished #1 out of 300 students taking 7th grade pre-exams! He was even competing with the wealthier kids at other private schools. In fact, 7 of the Top 10 scores were Lifesong kids!"


Orphan Sunday: One Day. One Voice. One Purpose.

On November 4th, as well as the surrounding Sundays, thousands of events will echo across America and around the globe, all sharing a single goal: that God's steadfast love for the orphan will also stir in our hearts.  From many sources, one voice. 

Orphan Sunday is an opportunity to excite family, community, church and friends to God's call to care for the orphan.

As Orphan Sunday approaches, we pray you will dedicate time on one Sunday in honor of the fatherless. 

Here are a few helpful and practical recourses for how to spend an Orphan Sunday from Christian Alliance for Orphans' Orphan website:

  • The Orphan's Table - Experiences impact us more deeply than words. On Orphan Sunday, share a meal eaten by orphans around the world.  Gather with family, small group or church for the meal, discussion and prayer.
  • More Resources - Check out for other church resources such as sermon starters, worship songs, bible studies, bulletin inserts, prayer guides, and much more!

We are hopeful you and your church family will honor orphans by participating in Orphan Sunday


Family Friday: "...Nothing is by chance..."

Phillip and Elaine were first called to adoption in 2000 as they sought to grow their family. They now have five daughers (three through adoption). After attending an "If You Were Mine" conference with the intent of starting a church adoption ministry, they were convicted that the Lord was calling them to adopt again.

Please listen is as they share God's almighty hand as He worked through their 4th adoption of Lily Rose from China with the help of Jeeah's Hope, one of Lifesong Church Adoption Fund Partners.

Our Lifesong grant was probably the biggest God-thing that occurred during the adoption process for Lily Rose. We met a couple, Skip & Ashley, via an online adoption community several years before beginning our adoption for Lily Rose. Ashley followed our blog during our adoption of our 5th daughter. Unbeknownst to me, she and a friend had began an adoption ministry called Jeeah's Hope, and were praying about who to award their first grant. Upon reading my blog about our financial plight, she contacted Lifesong.

I had no idea this was going on behind the scenes when we applied for our grant. Through Lifesong, they awarded their first grant to our family. That grant gave our Lily Rose, also a "critical heart child", a chance at life. By the worlds standards a coincidental meeting several years before began the process that would ultimately bring our daughter to her forever family. Of course, we knew that with the Lord, nothing is by chance and He had it all orchestrated before the foundation of the earth. We stand in awe of how He unites His families!

-Phillip & Elaine