Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Shake-ups that Wake-up

Yesterday the house shook. So did I. It took a while before I realized I had, once again, felt an earthquake. It’s only a matter of time before So Cal gets the big one – or so they say. Meanwhile, we’re all receiving our share of shake-ups. And I believe those shake-ups are sent to wake up.

Seems every day I meet someone else who’s struggling with depression from some unjust, unexpected divorce, or a deadly disease, or the loss of their house. Life is shaking them up.

This past week, the son of pastor-evangelist Greg Laurie – Christopher – died. He left behind his younger brother, Dad, Mom, wife, baby daughter and another daughter on the way. Who can explain such loss? As Greg Laurie in last Sunday’s sermon, quoting from Job 1:21, “Naked I came into the world and naked I’ll leave it. Blessed be the name of the Lord.”

He also said a lot of other inspiring things in that short, tear-jerking sermon. One thing’s for sure: when your faith is real, Christ is manifested and others can see Him through our response to the tragedies that rock our lives.

The weekend of August 15th, the Annual Harvest Crusade—founded by Greg Laurie—will take place again in the Angel Stadium near LA. These crusades draw thousands of people, and thousands get saved. (And you get to hear the coolest music.) I already know that Laurie’s messages will be the most powerful ever, and that there’ll be an incredible harvest of souls. God will use that pain for His gain. For His glory.

During foster care awareness month (May), the Steven Curtis Chapman family lost one of their adopted children. The story is convoluted (and I’ve blogged on it before so I won’t repeat it here). Why? I don’t know. Seems God allows a lot of shaking up to happen and the shaking up will bring waking up. God will use this tragedy to His glory – and perhaps in some curious way to bring more attention to the needs of the orphans waiting to be adopted.

My prayer today is that we could draw closer to the one who does the shaking so that our lives will be grounded in what cannot be shaken—so that what cannot be shaken may remain (Heb.12:27)—Christ.

Janey L. DeMeo, MA © July 2008

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Orphans First -- not last!

A little boy’s heart is broken this week. Shattered in little pieces.

Allen expected to meet his adopting parents for the first time last week. He had already seen their photo and dreamed of the life he would share with them. But that all changed suddenly when . . . the parents changed their minds.

For reasons only they really know, they got cold feet. But now Allen is left with a cold future and possibly a cold heart.

The majority of people on the streets and in prisons were society’s rejects. They either didn’t have a family—like Allen—or their family was totally dysfunctional. That’s why I believe God would have us pray for the foster children and the world’s orphans. That’s why I do what I do with Orphans First— That’s why I believe we should storm Heaven’s doors and ask the Lord what our part is in helping these children.

Let’s pray more than every before for a solution for Allen, and the many orphans who share his pain.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve got my work cut out. And a large part of that work is on my knees. If you’d like to join me praying for the needy children, you can subscribe to the Orphans First Prayer Chain (find it on the Orphans First website).

Copyright©July 2008

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Love Lessons from Christian the Lion

Tonight I heard of a teen boy torturing a baby—and laughing at it. Sure, the boy will be punished, but will the baby boy ever recover from his wounds ? We need to pray that he will.

In one sense, children can mend fast—if they’re loved. And a child who is loved will never forget those who love him, even if he doesn’t know how to respond and spends forever testing that love. It takes loving,loving and loving . . . and lots of prayer.

Here’s a clip on YouTube you don’t want to miss. Guaranteed to warm your heart: Christian the Lion. This is a true story. As a cub, Christian was nurtured and raised by two boys. When he reached a certain size, they were obliged to take him to Africa (on some kind of sarafi park I guess). A year later, they decided to visit him. They were told he wouldn’t recognize them. But . . . well, watch for yourself. And get your tissues ready.