"I was looking for someone to understand me, to love sincerely...I received all this!"
As you heard Natasha share in the video, the orphanage took care of her basic needs -- food, shelter, clothing.
But she longed for more.
Belonging. Commitment. Love from a family. Hope for a future.
Because we believe kids like Natasha need much more than their 'basic needs', the staff of Lifesong Ukraine are building relationships inside the orphanage walls to create what we call Constant Christian Presence (CCP).
The CCP provides mentorship and discipleship, improved living conditions, one-on-one counseling, group Bible study, job skills training, music lessons, and computer skills training.
Instead of the common trend of orphans creating orphans, Natasha, because of her support through CCP, now desires to help other children who are in orphanages to give them the support she received. Orphans mentoring orphans...a cycle worth striving for!
We are excited to announce that Lifesong Ukraine has recently launched a new child sponsorship program. If you are interested in helping build Constant Christian Presence by sponsoring a child like Natasha, please contact us.
"...He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the Lord has planted for his own glory." Isaiah 61:3
Entries in orphans (97)
**New Opportunity** We invite you to share a word of encouragement to our staff at Lifesong Ukraine. To do so, please or comment on this blog or our Facebook wall and it will be forwarded to our staff. Thank you in advance for your kind words of support!
Please enjoy this end-of-summer update from Denis, Lifesong Ukraine Director...
Alexei, camp program director
Morning Bible study
Our equestrian side of the camp program remains a big hit among kids. It makes our program unique in the eyes of the State authorities. And, it's always great for the kids to be around animals.
Please continue to pray for the young men and women who participated in our summer camps. Pray that God would bring fruit from the seeds that were planted this summer in each special heart.
We find ourselves at yet another Family Friday! Please join me in praise with Greg & Charisa and their growing family and as they share the pure FAITHFULNESS God has shown them in their journey...
This adoption was an adoption of faith almost from day one! We signed on with our agency in February and were excited to again add to our family through the miracle of adoption. Greg found out that his position was being cut and he would lose his job, along with the $5000 adoption credit his company would give. Yikes!
There were so many questions at that time—where would he find a job? Would we have to move? What about the adoption? Did we hear God wrong? We chose to have faith and believe God had something in store for us and He did! Greg was offered our job with our local food bank which lines up with his heart for helping the vulnerable! We were blessed as he only had to go two weeks without a job.
In March we received the referral of a beautiful baby boy whose name means “Praise.” We were excited and quickly fell in love. The Monday of the week we were leaving, I received that DREADED phone call. Our little one’s mother came to court and changed her mind and took him home. My first emotional reaction? I am done. Adoption is too hard. I can’t stand the emotional roller coaster anymore. I AM DONE!
Even in the midst of this God was working and moving. My caseworker called my husband first and told him to come home. We cried, prayed, asked many why’s and just sat in silence.
As we continued to pray God asked me, “Who is adoption about? You or the child that needs a home?” I began to realize, (I knew it down deep but it finally rose to the surface of my heart) that this was a good thing. If this little baby’s mom changed her mind and could raise him—than that is who he should be with! How could I be upset with that? Was I grieving? Yes—for the loss of the child who we thought would be our son. However, I was so happy that this child could be raised by the mother that carried him, named him, and loved him.
Fast forward a couple of days and we received another referral of a tiny little boy, Teshale, whose name means “Better One.” I can’t even begin to tell you how that confirmed everything for us. God has blessed us immensely and looking back we can see how everything worked according to His plan.
July 15th we were in Ethiopia for court and met our son. He was our son! The bond was immediate and we knew this was the child God had for our family. We came home September 10th 2011 and are doing well. We are more than blessed.
Adoption is hard. It is emotional. It is full of bumps, curves, and road blocks. It is worth it.
I now have so much more of a picture of what Christ endured for me. I have a glimpse of His heartache and passion. As I sat and cried over that first little boy I imagined how God weeps over those that He longs to have as His children.
Thank you Lifesong for being part of our story. Your encouragement and affirmation played a vital role in our adoption journey. We appreciate you so much!
-Greg & Charisa
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.
When you request The Orphan’s Table, you will be sent:
--An easy-to-cook meal package—the same food provided to feed orphans worldwide. (Prepare by boiling, instructions included.)
--An Orphan Sunday Prayer and Discussion Guide to help you make the most of this experience.
As you join in The Orphan’s Table, we pray God’s love for the fatherless will grow in your heart as well.
The cost is simply a donation of any amount. $5.00 will cover materials shipping for 1 food packet. Please indicate the number of food packet needed as each packet contains 6 meal servings.
We’re extending “The Orphan’s Table” internationally! If you live outside the U.S. and would like to participate in the Orphan’s Table for Orphan Sunday please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. You will be asked to cover shipping costs, but the meals and materials will be provided free.
PLEASE NOTE: the first shipment of Orphan’s Table packages will not be sent until approximately Tuesday, September 11, 2012. After that date, they will be shipped approximately bi-weekly. Place your order by Friday, October 12 to ensure the arrival of your meal in time for Orphan Sunday on November 4!
(**information taken from www.orphansunday.org)
**New Opportunity** We invite you to share a word of encouragement to our staff at Village of Hope-Guatemala. To do so, please comment on this blog or 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 from Village of Hope-Guatemala,
Every child deserves a safe place where they can be a kid. A place where they can freely problem solve, use their imagination, develop physical strength, coordination and balance. A place where they can grow, dream, imagine, explore and gain a sense of self.For many children in Guatemala this is nonexistent. Many of the children here lose their childhood too quickly due to the stress of just trying to survive.
The children who come to Village of Hope often have lived in desperate poverty and will for the first time have a safe, permanent place to call home. Our goal is to provide them with the opportunity to grow and develop into the humans the Lord intended them to be through providing a safe place to grow--as every child deserves.One of our big needs here at Village of Hope is a safe place for the children to play.Because the facility is built in a mountainous area this isn’t as simple as putting in a swing set and a soccer goal. A large area will have to be dug out, a retaining wall put up to keep the mud from sliding and then the playground will be put in.
View from a different direction...
We have been blessed by a donor who has offered to match up to $10k for the ground to be dug out, a retaining wall constructed, a grassy area planted, and a playground for the children at Village of Hope.
Every $1 given between now and Sept. 6th it will be doubled! What a great way to invest in the kingdom and see your dollar stretched! AND to make this even sweeter--everyone who donates gets entered into a drawing for a chance to win a Kindle Fire!!!
To give to the $10,000 match please go to: Lifesong for Orphans and please indicate it's for "Village of Hope Guatemala--$10K Match".