If you have had the privilege of serving regularly at orphanages, you would be familiar with the preparation that a small group does for a meeting with orphans. There is the planning, hopefully days before the visit. Some buy or prepare snacks. Others plan games and learning activities that will benefit the kids.
A tornado of activities for kids
Usually, Christian groups also keep in mind spiritual concerns and any pressing needs these under-privileged kids may have.
The Marg church family in Wanowrie has the joy of visiting a children’s home. Each Sunday evening with them is spent in an activity-blender similar to what’s described above. We also lend a helping hand-hopefully- in their school studies which a lot of them find particularly difficult.
We were doing fairly well, or so we thought, until a dear older lady in our church shared an experience in her heydays. Once when she was done with a busy day full of serving, she told her husband how happy she was to have been able to cook and serve in her Christian service. Her husband, now an able teacher with Marg, responded with something similar to these lines – “Did you realise that you have fed their stomachs well and sent them on their way to hell?
What have you done to share with them the amazing news of Jesus coming to die for their sins? You have accomplished nothing at all.”
She explained that her husband’s loving challenge hit her hard. We know he was not asking her to drop her acts of service- the Bible says true love will show itself in actions (1 John 3:18, NLT). But what is the need of the hour for kids who have no one as guardians, who may have material provision but little spiritual care?
What matters when it all ends
Do they not need truth AND love?
Should they not be told of the One who loved them to the end- Jesus?
We were guilty of over-looking their spiritual needs, Sunday after Sunday. In the light of Romans 10:13-14, it only made sense that we take the time to explain to these children in their language, that they have a stone heart that rebels against the God of the universe and that is why it is so easy for them to disobey authority.
They need to come to Jesus who alone can give them a new heart, eager to love and trust God, because He has loved them first by not even sparing His own Son, to save them from the consequences of their own wrongs!
And that is where we at Wanowrie find ourselves- we want to be responsible, spiritual parents to these little ones. But this is not yet another activity. It needs utter dependence on the Holy Spirit – Spirit of God, please help us make disciples of these children!
Have you interacted with orphans? How have you understood sharing the gospel with such children?