Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Destiny of the Damaged

“NO, she couldn’t stay in my home; do you know what kind of life she’s led?” “Absolutely not, he’s damaged; didn’t you hear what he did?” “I can’t parent a kid from foster care; they are all just too bad”. The damaged orphan, the child who many feel doesn’t need another opportunity for a stable, permanent home - a chance to have a new life with loving parents. Are theses children just too far gone to help?

In Jericho, there lived an Amorite woman whom many believed to be despicable and damaged. The iniquity of the Amorites stands out among a list of other cultures that inhabited Jericho in Genesis 15:18-19. Not only was this woman an Amorite, she was a prostitute. It would be fair to say that in that time period, an Amorite prostitute would have been considered one of the most damaged, worthless people of society.

However, a divine meeting with two of God’s people would change her life forever. Through Joshua, God sends two of his people to the Amorite women. We read in Joshua Chapter 2 that this woman had already heard of the works of God; this is what she says,

"For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red Sea before you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon and Og, whom you utterly destroyed. "When we heard it, our hearts melted and no courage remained in any man any longer because of you; for the LORD your God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath."

The two men made a promise with the woman that they would come to her and save her in her time of need. The Bible tells of God’s people coming to Rahab:

“Joshua said to the two men who had spied out the land, "Go into the harlot's house and bring the woman and all she has out of there, as you have sworn to her." So the young men who were spies went in and brought out Rahab and her father and her mother and her brothers and all she had; they also brought out all her relatives and placed them outside the camp of Israel. Rahab the harlot and her father's household and all she had, Joshua spared; and she has lived in the midst of Israel to this day, for she hid the messengers whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho. (Joshua 2:22;23;25)

The Word of God went before God’s people to this Amorite woman in the land of Jericho, and the Holy Spirit is going before you to the heart of the orphan in foster care. As God goes before us, we MUST follow the command that he gives us in James 1:27, to look after orphans and widows in their time of distress. God’s people came to this desperate woman in her time of need and rescued her from her situation. We must also go to the troubled orphan and rescue him from his desperate situation.

Foster care workers do the best that they can, but it is impossible for them to meet the needs of 500,000 orphaned in America without God’s people. It is our responsibility to act on our Father’s calling and follow the Holy Spirit in action. Our Father is preparing the hearts of children to be plucked from their situations and be forever changed by the people who serve the “God in heaven above and on the earth beneath”.

The people of Israel took Rahab into their families, she married one of their own, Salmon, and she lived with them for the rest of her life. And once a part of God’s family, how did God see fit to use this harlot of Jericho? In Matthew 1:5-6 we learn that our Father finds her acceptable to not only become one of God’s people, but to become the mother to the godly Boaz, the great-great-grandmother to King David, and ultimately an ancestor to our Savior Jesus Christ.

If through the love of His people God can take an Amorite harlot and transform her into a righteous ancestor of Christ, how much more can He do in the life of an orphan in foster care? Is that “damaged” child, undeserving of your time or is he a child of God who, through your love, will be a testimony of faith. He has already prepared the way for you; will you follow His call?

By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. By faith Rahab the harlot did not perish along with those who were disobedient, after she had welcomed the spies in peace Hebrews 11:30-31.

Daniel Taylor
Georgia State Director

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