Several months ago, I wrote a blog post about how my husband and I accepted the invitation to go on a vision trip to India to explore the leading of God to open a children’s home for girls and a life skills training center for victims of human trafficking. Because the coordinators of this trip had connections with an already established children’s home, it was decided that we would serve there for part of our trip to see the ins and outs of running a children’s home. If not for the God encounter that I had on March 18th of this year in my living room, I may not be as sure why I was going, or if I would be going at all. What I do know is that God is VERY clear in His word about orphan and widow care. I also know that He gives a clear directive to go and tell people about His Son. I have no choice in the matter. When God grips your heart so tightly for His will and His people, you can’t turn away even if you wanted to. I don’t want to.
Let me share a blog post by the man who runs Shiloh, the boy’s children’s home where we will serve in the coming months.
This is not an easy story to tell. But it needs to be told. For safety we have changed this boys name in this story to Walrus, or Wally. . Wally’s’ father lost his mother in a gambling debt- a card game gone wrong. I wish this was a fictional story, but it is not.
His father truly lost his mother in a drunken card game. His mother had to leave with another man that she was now indebted to. When his father came out of a drunken, high stupor he realized what he had done. He did the only thing a coward knows how to do. He took it out on Wally. He beat him so severely that he cracked and broke Wally’s skull. You read that write, the father beat his own son so badly that HE BROKE HIS SKULL!!!! I am crying just thinking about it. Wally was knocked unconscious and was in and out of consciousness for the next 2 days. His mother waited for 2 days before she built up enough courage to run away from her new “man.” She ran to the police who also brought in social workers. They went to the home and found Wally and his brother. Wally was admitted into the hospital and slipped into a coma for a month. That was honestly the safest place he could be. After he came to his mother and he and his brother stayed at a battered women’s shelter but it was only temporary. The police and the social workers brought the 2 brothers to us. His mother was also there. It was emotional. The boys did not want to leave their mother. The younger brother quickly assimilated and was having fun in no time. But Wally was not happy. In fact after his mother left he cried uncontrollably and cut his arm. He would have done anything to have his mother come and take him away. But I sat with him and held him. I didn’t talk to much and tell him that things were better or that this was happening for a purpose. I just simply held onto him. And he clung to me.
I have an advantage. When new boys come to us, the last thing they want is for someone to replace their mother and father. They have a hard time opening up to the other staff. But since I am a big white teddy most cling to me. They do not see me as a threat to replace their father.
So Wally stayed by my side for the first month. And it was not a fun month. When I took him to school to be admitted and placed they told me that he was previously in 8th grade. He was first in his class and hadn’t made a B in 2 years. But when they tested him, because of his brain injury, he couldn’t even recite the alphabet. They had no choice but to place him in Kindergarten. So here was a 12 year old boy who had lost his mother, his father had brutally beaten him, had no home, was in a new environment, and was now having to deal with his brain injury by having to start school ALL over again.
It was not pleasant to say the least. He felt different, strange, and awkward. He was embarrassed. When he first arrived I could tell that he was dealing with a head injury. He would stare off into space and be zoned out. Many times he would tell me that his brain felt like a cloud.
This poor boy was facing every uphill battle imaginable.
But we just simply loved him through it. I am not here to say that he is completely well. He is not. He is still dealing with abandonment issues. His brother adjusted the moment he arrived. But Wally still feels awkward and out of place. He knows he doesn’t think or act like the other boys his age. But he knows that he is loved. He is beginning to adjust. He is beginning to come out of the fog and cloud that he has from his PTSD and brain injury.
I will continue to be there with him every step of the way, holding him tight and letting him cling to me. He is still on the way up the hill, but he is doing better. And that;s what I live for.
You see, this is why we do what we do. We stand in the gap for this precious little boys and young men when the world discards them. We are there to pick them up and protect them when the world abuses and beats them. Its what we are called to do. We have been uniquely equipped by God for this. It is the essence of who we are. And to see small strides like Wally has made in such a short time give us the resolve to keep fighting.
We have added 14 boys in a 1 month span. Many have similar stories to Wally. Their arrival has destroyed our budget. We are at the end of our financial rope. These arent case studies for us. They are not distant stories we have heard. This is real life for us. And to see one of these boys rebound the way Wally has, makes this whole thing worthwhile. Its a life worth fighting for, even when we dont know where the next support will come from.
There are countless boys and girls outside of our door with stories like Wally. We dont have the budget to support them. But God does. And we firmly believe that if He sends them our way, He will also send the people to partner with us. And that makes me feel loved in a way that I try to show the boys.
Take a look at the first picture of Wally. Notice the blank stare and the emotion and hurt behind the eyes. And notice the last photo. It was taken 1 month later. It is of the same boy who now feels loved and secure and safe. This is what No Longer Orphans does for these boys. Thank you for remembering us in prayer and for considering supporting us as God leads you.
I realize there are horrible things happening in my own town, state and country concerning children. I am not blind to that fact. What I do know, is God has called me out of my comfort zone into a place where I have never been. He has given me three beautiful, spunky and challenging boys of my own. By Indian standards, I am highly blessed to have them and no girls. I have always wanted a girl. Wally’s story is hard to read at best. One thing Wally has that girls in his country just don’t have is a fighting chance. Wally’s parents are blessed to have two boys and no girls as girls are the equivalent of dead weight, financially, to a family from what I have learned. The dowry system in India takes away, in many cases, even the prospect of air in your lungs if you are born a girl. I cannot help but wonder if Wally indeed does have sisters, but maybe she/they were aborted or killed after birth. There are more accounts than I care to read about baby girls being fed poison after birth, left in a field to die, mothers forbade to feed them or the in-laws simply murdering them. Just for being a girl. Having been born female myself, I may not be typing this message right now if not for God’s plan for me to be born in the red, white and blue. Only by God’s grace and mercy. Maybe not for my sake, but for the little girls in India who may or may not be born yet whom God saw fit for me to care for. Oh my goodness the emotion that sweeps over me as I write this. I feel so small next to God when the reality hits that before he world was made, he planned for me to be created for this purpose, in this time for an unknown (to me) group of little girls. If I believe that God shaped and called me to this, then I have to believe he called others to the places which surround me now. We were all created for a purpose. I believe mine is to serve and love the women and girls of Rajasthan, India.