At the End of the Rainbow

This weekend, New Horizons for Children is celebrating St. Patrick’s Day by filling up a pot of gold!

There are still many children on our photolisting who have not been chosen for this summer’s hosting.  All of these children want to come to America.  Some of them want to learn to swim; others want to ride a bike for the first time; still others wish they could try out a roller coaster.  All of them want to experience a family.

This weekend through St. Patrick’s Day, generous leprechauns will double your gift! 

If you place a scholarship on a child not yet matched with a family, your gift will be doubled. 

Turn your $25 into $50, your $100 into $200, just like magic. 

All donations up to $500 will be doubled on any child not yet matched.    The goal is to raise $10,000 by midnight EST on St. Patrick’s Day.

Click here to donate.

Will you help these children chase their rainbow to America this summer?

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Why Host a Teen?

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NHFC interview team with some of the teens available for summer hosting

If you are like most people, when you look at old family pictures, your eyes are drawn to the children.  Wedding pictures are always cuter with a scowling flowergirl sitting on a bride’s train; a vacation shot of a tiny boy staring in wide-eyed wonder at the vast ocean is the one that is framed and hung on the wall.

No one frames pictures of the 15-year-old with the bad perm.  No one gets the warm fuzzies when a pimply teenager scowls in a family photo.

Teens aren’t cute.  They are awkward and pointy in all the wrong places.  They have a sense of style that is foreign to adults, and the music they like, well, it’s just…strange.  They are struggling with that land halfway between child and adult.  One moment they are sweet and engaged, and the next they are looking at you like you have three heads because how can you possibly understand their world?

No one willingly desires to go back to their teen years.  They are hard, and confusing, and seem so overwhelming.  Parenting children through those years isn’t a whole lot easier.

And this is the struggle that orphan teens face.  Many people are looking at the New Horizons for Children photolisting right now.  Who would want the girl with the bad perm?  Who would want the lanky boy who is all elbows?

But hosting isn’t about picking the cutest or the youngest or the one who looks the happiest.  It’s about loving a hurting child.  It’s about showing a child who doesn’t know what a functional family is that they are not alone.  It’s about being Christ to them…being a servant who helps set the lonely into families.

Unfortunately, teens often go overlooked.  They don’t look vulnerable the way a six year old does.  They don’t show their fear, or appear to need a family.  They look confident and brave and maybe even defiant.

That’s because they have to.  They spent years learning that no one wanted them, that they can only trust themselves.  Of course they are going to look brave.  If they made it this far, they had to be.

And that should break our hearts.

One host mom of a teen boy had this to say, “As we looked through the 300 pictures of available orphans and read all their bios (all deserving to come and be loved by a family), one thing really struck us. One of the teen boys interviewed said, ‘I am still looking for my family.’ The reality is that once an orphan reaches the age of 5, their chances of ever being adopted are slim. The chances of an unadoptable teen boy being invited into someone’s home are astronomically slim. There is a huge group of hurting kids who need love that are being dismissed because they have ‘aged out.’ Our hearts broke for these boys who cannot be adopted but still want the love of a family.”

Five reasons you should consider hosting a teen:

1)      They are at a critical point where they can make really good or really devastating decisions. Think back to your own childhood.  Think of the most important conversation you had with your dad.  Think of the time your mom spoke her heart and you realized the depth of your actions.  Think of that time your trusted mentor had a true heart-to-heart with you.  Those moments likely happened in your teens.   These children don’t have those people around them.  But they could—you could be that person for them.  You can have a huge impact on them!

2)      They tend to understand and appreciate hosting. While they might not express it verbally to you, they know the losses they have suffered.  They know what they have missed out on.  And they are eager to experience it, even if they pretend that they aren’t.  They understand the amazing opportunity they are being given.  They just might not tell you about it.  But it doesn’t matter.  You didn’t get into this for the accolades anyway.

3)      They have the ability to create lasting relationships.  They might not be adoptable, but adoption is not the only way to bond with a child.  Sometimes student visas are possible.  Sometimes they can come for hosting again.  Regardless, most teens have greater access to social media and other communication methods, like Skype.  With today’s possibilities for international connections, an ongoing relationship IS possible. Imagine someone choosing YOU to walk alongside as you transition to young adulthood – after you believe your opportunity has passed!

4)      They need affection.  There is no age limit on loneliness.  There is no magical year when you suddenly don’t need your mom to say, “I’m so proud of you!” or your dad to say, “You really are talented!”  They need to hear it.  You can say it.

5)      God calls us to love the ones the world sees as “unlovable.”  Jesus ate with sinners.  His best friends were lowly fishermen.  His inner circle was constantly bickering and posturing.  These people weren’t cute and cuddly.  They were prickly and awkward, constantly challenging and questioning.  They said a lot of mean things and made choices foolishly.  They were sort of like a group of hurting teens.  And he more than loved them…he invited them into his inner circle.  They became his family.  He never “adopted” them with legal paperwork.  He just loved them with everything he had.  And in return, they betrayed him and denied him and made all kinds of drama around him.  But he was faithful in loving them.  And what did they become?  His children.  And they took his love and spread it to the nations.

 

Don’t miss the opportunity to plant in the fertile soil of teenage hearts.  Host a teen.  Show God’s love in a tangible way.  Change a life.

Click here to view the photolisting of available children.

Give the Gift of Love

Valentine’s Day is a day to celebrate love.  A day to tell your dear ones how much they mean to you.  A day to count the ways that they have changed your life.

Not all of us have significant others, but we have family—mothers and fathers, siblings and friends, some with us and some gone from our lives—and all of them mattered.  All of them made a difference in helping us become the people we are today.

But what if you didn’t have anyone to celebrate?  What if you had no one to love you?  No one to tell you the ways you matter?

This Valentine’s Day, consider showing your love by donating towards a scholarship for hosting an orphan this summer.  Instead of asking for flowers or candy or jewelry, sign up for the photo listing and select a child to sponsor.

Give the gift of love this Valentine’s Day.

Scholarships make a HUGE difference—80% of the children with a scholarship are chosen for hosting.  What is a $10 box of candy, or a $25 bouquet of flowers compared to helping someone else know that they matter and that they are loved?

To celebrate Valentine’s Day, New Horizons will double any scholarship donation of $25 or more for unmatched children.  DOUBLE your gift of love February 13-16, 2014.

Scholarships help change lives.  Please give one today. 

 

“Someone made a $500 donation scholarship to our host daughter before we were matched with her. That donation spurred us to choose her from the 2-3 girls we were Juliestill praying about. We are now pursuing her adoption to be her forever family. Your gift got that moving. We are so grateful for your generous gift that allowed us to meet her. The other girls we were praying over were all hosted and are in process to be adopted at this point, too. Maybe that would have happened under different pairings. The fact is that this arrangement of children and families was tipped and guided by your act of kindness. Thank you and God Bless!” –Rob and Julie, New York
 
“We waited until the final hours…literally three hours to go until matching ended.   If our boys didn’t Chelseyhave a scholarship, we NEVER would have been able to host both of them. I was only looking at hosting one child…..then my TWO boys had a scholarship that made them an option.   To think–money almost kept us from having the most amazing 4 weeks.  I’m so grateful to the donors for contributing and believing that these boys needed a family.” –Bobby and Chelsey, Wisconsin
 
“Hosting was a stretch for us financially. We stepped forward with hopeful hearts. But when our chosen host child was unable to come, we gave away our gathered funds to others so that they would find a family. THEN we found the Suzan2child that God had for us…but we had no money. The beauty of scholarship money coming in at the “last minute” from people that we had never met in person, but who shared a passion for these kids and love for Christ, was like a heavenly nod of approval. It was the encouragement we needed to go on. Thanks to those gifts, we enjoyed the most amazing summer and are on the way to bringing our host child home forever!! Each of you who gave made that possible. Please don’t underestimate what scholarships of any amount can do for a child or for a potential host family.” — Bryan and Suzan, Maryland
 
“We were considering hosting a set of three siblings a second time.  The thought of paying the hosting fees for three children again was a bit overwhelming. It Melodywas the biggest obstacle in our decision. We contacted NHFC, and they offered us a partial scholarship.  This brought a sense of relief to us and was the encouraging factor that helped us make the decision to host again.  After that hosting, we committed ourselves to adopting them and now are waiting on travel dates to bring them home.  We are so appreciative of the help we received from them.  It helped make our decision a whole lot easier!” –Wendell and Melody, Ohio
 
Lori“We decided to host on one of the last days possible. Our two host children had a scholarship, and that played a part in our decision to host them. We would have hosted regardless, but since we were paying for two children instead of one and the cost was doubled, it helped us decide to host a sibling group.”–Dan and Lori, Pennsylvania
 
“We were only able to host because someone who had met our child on a mission trip chose to offer him a hefty Stacey2scholarship on the very last day of matching if someone would agree to host him. That was the push we needed to say yes. Our host son was amazing. He was so incredible, in fact, that people were falling in love with him everywhere. Because of that scholarship, we were able to help him find his forever family and now he is an orphan no more.” — Peter and Stacey, California
 

THIS WEEKEND ONLY! All scholarship donations of $25 or more given February 13-16, 2014 for children not yet on hold or being rehosted by the same family will be doubled.   Click here to donate.

Why Me?

Teen“Why you want me?”

It was a question that surprised me, coming out of my confident and poised host daughter.  She is all spunk and light, and one of the greatest people-readers I’ve ever met.  And yet here she was, suddenly so much younger than her self-assured 16-year-old self.

“Why you want me?”

The tilt of her head a little more insistent, the pressed line of her half-smile a little harder, her arched eyebrow a little higher.  Her whole body was poised for my answer.

I wanted to scoop her into my arms and never let her go.  Oh, my dear one.  Why?  How could I not?  You are in my very soul.  I love you beyond the bounds of what I ever thought possible.  Want you?  No, I didn’t just want you.  I needed you.  My whole life I have been waiting to find you.

But I know why she asked the question.  She wasn’t a nine-year-old, like I had hosted before.  She wasn’t “cute and adorable” on a photo listing.  She wasn’t adoptable.  She was a teenager.  And who in their right mind wants a teenager, especially one with prickly hurts that sometimes peek out of a strong and confident exterior?

It sure wasn’t me six months ago.

I found out about hosting last year, after hoping to adopt for four years but having no success.  Perhaps during the wait, I could use my time wisely and show a sweet child the love of a family.  And maybe this was a path that would lead to adoption after all—I was open to the possibility.  I hosted a nine-year-old boy that summer, and loved him very much—more than I expected, actually.  But while he was here, I discovered that I could not adopt him even if I desired it.  And I found out something even more surprising: it didn’t matter.  He was a special little boy, and my love for him just poured out easily.

But what of my plans?  Sure, I still wanted to adopt, but I found myself seeing a world even bigger than adoption.  Love doesn’t end just because a child isn’t adopted.  Family isn’t defined by legal words on a piece of paper.  We were designed to be relational, to be known intimately.

Every child feels that need to belong. Every child needs to know love.  Every child needs to know that they are seen, that they matter, that they are not forgotten.

Goodness…isn’t that what we ALL want?  I don’t think that there is ever an age when we stop needing that.  And so my heart opened a little bit more and I realized that maybe my vision had been too narrow.

I think it’s easy to see that the little ones need arms to hug them, need someone to tuck them in at night, need someone to kiss their boo-boos.  And they do.  But at what age does that stop?  At what age do they stop needing someone to care?

I think we quickly forget how much we needed our mamas when we were 15 or 16 and our hearts broke for the first time.  Our memories fade on that time the tears flowed when the boy didn’t ask us to the dance, or when the girl laughed at our awkward attempt to tell her how we felt.  And we forget how we fell into our mom’s arms, or just wanted our dad to put his arm around us and tell us that it’s not the end of the world.  Our boo-boos were different, but oh, how we longed for someone to kiss them and take the pain away.

And these teens, their world of heartbreak isn’t a school dance or a flippant girl.  Their problems are sometimes adult-sized.  Their pain is often more than most adults could bear.

And yet, here they are, faces smiling with courage maybe their hearts don’t have.  Daring to hope that maybe things will get better.  Believing that it has to.

And they go into these interviews with New Horizons for Children, and they tell their stories, all the time believing that no one will want them.  Probably the cute little kid will get picked, and they will be forgotten again.  And still they go.

Still they go.

Still they speak.

They say, I’m still here.  I’m still fighting.  And I want to be seen.

Such bravery in the face of such hardship.

And I was moved by it.  Me, who never would have looked twice at a teenager a few months ago, was captured by the bold hope on those faces.  And there was one sweet, brave girl, with a hundred watt smile and a mischievous sparkle in her eyes.  I saw her, and I did not want her to be forgotten.

I wasn’t going to host over Christmas.  I was instead going to support others who were.  And I certainly wasn’t looking for a teen.

But I couldn’t let her go.  I was originally intending to advocate for her to others, but the more I talked about her, the more I knew I needed her.  And so she came, and we became family.

She has changed me.  Made me better.  And I found that her age didn’t matter.   She needed me as much as that nine-year-old did.  Maybe more.

And I told her so.  Why did I want you?  That’s simple.

I want you because I love you.

Love doesn’t have an age cut off or a cuteness factor.  There is One who loved me in my sin, when I was the most unlovable.  How can I not love others that way?

But the thing is, it’s not hard.  These teens, they want a mama’s love.  They want a daddy’s affection.  They want the same thing you do.  They want to be known.

And when I look into my girl’s eyes, all the questions about whether I could do it or if I could be enough just melted away.  I didn’t see a teenager all cocky and confident in front of me.  I saw a girl, a young woman, hoping that maybe it was true.  Hardly believing it could be.

“Why you want me?”

Because, my love, I saw you.  I truly saw you.  You are not forgotten.

Veldorah Rice is a two-time host mom and volunteer with NHFC.  She also teaches English and Communications to high school and college students.  You can follow her blog here.

Step Out Onto The Ice

Today our interview team took a risk and walked out onto the ice of a frozen lake. We thought it was risky to step onto that lake. That first step was hard. It took courage, and it forced us to reflect on our host kids and the huge risk they take when they choose to come to America. They will face so many unknowns…our team was unsure if the ice would hold their weight, these kids are unsure if a host family will be able to hold the weight of their heart. They too have the courage to face weeks inundated with a language they don’t understand, courage to try new foods and to leave behind their friends and all that is familiar to them! Will you choose to step out onto the ice and host a child this summer?

 

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God Sized Dream: What they Don’t Tell You About Hosting

Post by guest blogger and host mom, Hyacynth Worth. You can follow her awesome blog here.

 

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They told us this would be exhausting.

They said that blending a family with a child from half a world away who doesn’t speak the same language and doesn’t have a family to call keeps forever would be challenging and rewarding

and that our hearts would be full.

They cautioned us to set boundaries, guidelines and stick to the many, many rules put in place to protect the children and the families.

The shared statistics, helped us understand what happens to these children, many of whom have found themselves in situations that bad dreams are made of and helped us see what the love of a family does to turn around a life — what being chosen and Chosen does for a hurting heart.

They said to keep it simple, show love and limit sweets.

They promised our sentences would become broken fragments of two different languages and that laughter would become our universal language.

They warned time would swoosh by too fast, that our hearts would be forever changed, that we’d suffer the kind of whiplash that only occurs when you’ve been swept off your feet by God’s amazing goodness on display.

And all of that has been true.

They even told us we couldn’t possibly fit everything we wanted to send back with her into a suitcase and adhere to the 50-pound weight limit … and they were right about that, too; there was no way our family would fit in it even if we tried.

I helped her pack yesterday, the afternoon before she was set to return home to Eastern Europe. I’ve never wanted to crawl inside a suitcase the way I did then, 50-pound weight limit be darned.

As she placed item after item into her suitcase, I thought about how much stuff accumulates in one month … and I thought about how it doesn’t even compare to the amount of love; I found myself grateful that love doesn’t pack into a suitcase, or we’d surely have blown through that limit like you wouldn’t believe and like I could never explain.

No one told us that.

But how could they? How could anyone have put that kind of love to words? How could anyone have said we’d feel like a piece of our heart had stepped out from our chests and boarded a plane to Europe, still tethered to us?

People kept telling us how we were blessing her with this gift of a month in our home … and I know there’s truth in that as I recall some of the last words, hugs we shared this morning before she stepped through security.

But that’s not the whole of it, and I’d be sorely amiss to end there.

That beautiful girl came bundled with many gifts — she added to the love, laughter, fun and spirit of our Christmas and New Year Celebrations and our home. She lavished attention on the boys and brought us all lots of smiles and giggles. She was a patient language teacher for me, and she reminded us to slow down and savor life.

Those are all really big, wonderful gifts.

But the real gift? The real gift was simply knowing and loving her, a beautiful blessing from our extraordinarily good God.

There’s a lot no one told us about hosting. And there’s a lot I never would have understood.

No one told us that we’d be left feeling like the gift we’d given

would feel like it was given 10-fold back to us.

 

Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow. James 1:17

Leaping…. together

Post by guest blogger and host mom, Veldorah Rice

Recently, I worked on a commercial shoot.  I love working in the film industry, and always look forward to the next gig.

The thing is, most of the time, no one knows what I *do*.

I mean, when you talk about a film you like, you probably discuss the actors and the director, right?  If you’re really into films, maybe you discuss the cinematographer or the music director.

But rarely do people talk about the producer, or the craft services outfit, or the production assistants.  Unless you were there, you don’t really know they exist.

That’s my job.  I don’t exist in the final product to most people.

For this last shoot, I was the unit producer, which means I did a lot of paperwork, managed a lot of people, and made sure everything was running smoothly throughout the day.  You won’t see my work in the finished project.

But you’ll see the results of my work.

For example, there was one moment in the shoot when someone walked into the place we were shooting and wanted to know from the director what we were doing.  This person had an issue that needed to be resolved.  That’s where I come in.  I took the person aside to see how we could help fix it.  In the time that I took to help this person, the director got the shot he needed.  If he had stopped to resolve the situation himself, the shot wouldn’t have happened.  I may not have worked on the shot myself, but I enabled it to happen by taking care of the things around the director. And every time I see that shot, I’ll know that I did a good job and worked hard.

 That’s the way it is with hosting. 

 Often, all we see is the kids.  We see where they start and where they end up.  We see what a change hosting made.

What we often miss is how that process happens.
The change can only happen when we create an environment that allows the children to grow.  We need to take care of the things around them.  We need to give them a chance to feel the love of a family.
And there are lots of people working hard to do just that.  The teams of volunteers helping to match the kids.  The people who support the families financially.  The prayer partners who faithfully intercede for each hosting.  The chaperones who give up their holidays to travel halfway around the world in order to help these children.
There are so many people who work together to make a hosting succeed.  Most of their work will never be recognized in the final product: a changed child.  Yet still they work.  And that child would not have been changed through a hosting experience without their efforts.

 So let’s come together to help these children.

As we come to the end of the matching period, there are still so many children waiting to be chosen by a family.

They need you.
They need to have you on their team.
Host a child.  You’re not doing it alone.  There’s a whole support system to help you.
Or be part of the support.  Host a chaperone.  Give financially.  Pray.  Tell a friend that they can do this.
Sometimes just knowing that there are others with you is enough to take the leap.

 

So leap.

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Challenging the Ordinary Life

Post by guest blogger and host mom, Lindsay Hill

A year ago, today, I was a very different person. I struggled with fear and with what people thought about me.  I worried constantly about doing enough, being enough, finding enough to be truly happy. The abundant life, the peace, the joy I was promised seemed elusive. Things were, you know, fine. But I didn’t feel full of purpose. I had dreams that didn’t seem to make sense, and I felt a bit resigned to an ordinary existence.

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And then I stumbled across a crazy, far-fetched opportunity: invite a child into my home for four weeks. Open up my heart to a child without a mother and show her love. Step out of my comfort zone to show care for someone without comfort. Dig down deep to the bedrock of my beliefs to see if I trusted God enough to make this happen. Challenge my perception of the world, of my God, of myself.

Well, they don’t exactly advertise life transformation on the New Horizons for Children website.  But when I started to read about how you could host an orphan in your home for four weeks at Christmas, I was immediately hooked. I read through that entire website–every page, every link–in one night. I was overwhelmed with fear but also with excitement. I KNEW this was something that God brought to my attention. He hadn’t given me a fascination with Eastern Europe for nothing. I was the child who had written a research paper on the fall of the Russian Romanov dynasty in sixth grade, after all. I had the chance to travel to Russia twice in high school and in college on missions trips.

And God had been awakening my heart to the needs of the people in the former USSR ever since. Two years before, I bawled my eyes out while reading Adopted for Life–of two little boys being carried out of their orphanage into the sunlight for the very first time in their lives. Their new parents tried to reassure them they would be safe and cared for, but they knew nothing but the dirt and stench and neglect in a Soviet-style institution. The year after that, I sat in the women’s conference at church, hearing about the horrors of human trafficking, astonishingly prevalent in Eastern Europe.

And ever since that day, one year ago today, that God showed me how to make a difference in the world, I have been different. I can honestly say that in this last year, I have prayed more prayers, fasted more meals, dug deeper into Scripture, and experienced more miracles than I ever have in my life. I found a divine purpose in my life: to change the world by changing the life of a girl from the other side of the world.

Now, a new chapter lies before us: another step, a greater challenge. Although fear and worry threaten to overwhelm me at times, I look at my life a year ago today, and I say,

“Lord, I will go where you lead me.”

autumn_path-wallpaper-1680x1050 I want to be the person God created me to be–someone completely dependent on Him, totally trusting in His grace and love, willing to step out of the boat in “the great unknown, where feet may fail.”

I pray a year from now, I can show you all a picture of M, not simply visiting, but home. For now I cannot imagine life without her!

But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, ‘Abba, Father.’” (Galatians 4:4-6)

 

Christmas is Coming…

It’s hard to believe, but Christmas is coming.
Don’t think so? Just go to WalMart.

chr lightsThe staff and volunteers of NHFC are elbow deep in the matching process for the upcoming winter hosting programs. We are now serving orphans from FOUR countries- Latvia, Ukraine, China and most recently, The Philippines and they’ll ALL be here for Christmas.

The good news: We’ve matched quite a few kids with host families. We’re REALLY excited about that!

The bad news: There are still A LOT of kids who need (yes, I said NEED) a host family this Christmas.

Matching for China and The Philippines ends in 2 weeks, Latvia and Ukraine a couple of weeks after that.

So what’s the big deal? It’s not like bringing an orphan over for Christmas is going to change the world, right? It’s a happy kind of life experience for them… presents, Christmas trees, caroling, cookies, maybe some snow….

Why should I pay for them to have a sweet little vacation when my kids are growing so fast they need new clothes every other week, the car needs new tires and we just had to replace the hot water heater?
Besides, we tithe at church, support the youth group as well as other local charities.

These kids are half a world away- why are they MY problem?
Where are THEIR paren……oh.

I can’t afford to send MY kids on a European vacation. Why should I spend my hard earned money on some kid I don’t even know?
If they’re so needy, where is their chur…… oh.

Look, our schedule is CRAZY over Christmas. We’ve got school concerts, parties, gift exchanges, family to visit plus family coming here. I just don’t see how we have time to spend on an orphan.
If they’re so lonely, where is their fam….. oh.

I admire what you’re doing, I really do. But it’s just not for me. I don’t think I could “love” a stranger. Especially one who doesn’t speak English.
This is someone else’s job. Not mine.

Besides, we kind of had plans to take a big family vacation this next summer. We can’t blow that money on a kid we don’t know. I mean, sure… if a friend really needed the money, I’d lend it to them… but they’d pay me back. And even if they COULDN’T right away… that’s different. It’s a friend.

I’m not here to cast stones.
I’m not here to lay a guilt trip on anyone.
I’m not asking you to blow your budget.
I’m not here to step on toes. Well, maybe just a little.

We have kids on the photolisting from all four countries who NEED to come for hosting. I can’t say it any plainer than that.

They NEED to come.
They NEED to be loved.
They NEED to see Jesus.
They NEED to be accepted.
They NEED to be blessed.
They NEED to be covered in prayer.
They NEED to be well fed and clothed.
They NEED to be safe.
They NEED to be chosen.
They NEED to be a part of a loving, functional family

Even if it’s only for 4-5 weeks.

Hosting is not for everyone.
But we have families who are ready and willing to host who can’t afford it all on their own.

Could you offer a partial scholarship on a waiting child to help get them hosted?

Could you sign up now for our monthly giving program and start building a scholarship fund for the summer 2014 host program?

Could your church or small group choose a child (or two or three) to place a partial scholarship on?

Hosting may not be for you.
Or it may not be for you RIGHT NOW.

Either way, you can still make a tremendous difference.

Don’t assume someone else will give.

You just may be the “someone else” God has in mind to help work a Christmas miracle.

Steps of Obedience

footstepspost by guest blogger and host mom,  Lindsay Hill

“WHO is on the other side of your obedience?” Nancy Alcorn

Here is how some simple steps of obedience have impacted the lives of others:
Our family signed up to host because another family was selling books on a home school forum to raise money for their hosting fees.
That same mama was praying that Anya would be hosted.

She was a part of the answer to her own prayer.

When we signed up to host, I started praying that other families in our area (and specifically from our church) would host.
There was another mama from my church whom I had never met, who couldn’t host last Christmas, but she was praying that other people from our church would host.
Her family hosted this summer.

We were part of the answers to each others prayers.

There was another mama that saw Anya’s picture and wanted to host her—but we signed up first! She continued to pray for Anya, that God’s will would be done in her life. Her family hosted another little girl this summer because of Anya. I met this mama by “chance” via Facebook.

Now we are both praying for two little girls on the other side of the ocean.

Today yet another mama emailed me and said her family had signed up to host this Christmas because of a blog post I had written.

None of these actions in themselves are overwhelmingly earth-shattering. But when we take a step of obedience, God steps into the miraculous.
We give our loaves and fishes to Jesus, and He satisfies thousands.

As fearful as being obedient can be, I am more afraid to NOT obey—what miracle might I miss?

I want to lean in close and hear my Father’s heart beat.