Easter Sunday is the most fundamental, essential, and important day in the life of any Christ-follower. We acknowledge this fact each year on Easter Sunday when churches all throughout the nation recruit child-care workers, put out metal chairs, increase the amount of ushers, and find more parking attendants. Easter Sunday is by far the high watermark for church attendance throughout the US.
However, do we live with the victory of Easter and the battle of the cross stamped on our foreheads and burned in our hearts the weeks after? Or do we move on with life, business, and pleasure? Do even ministries and churches, move on to programs, aid, and social justice apart from the Gospel which was so plainly profound from Good Friday to Easter Sunday?
May it not be so, may we realize that, "Proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus is the foremost, fundamental, necessary, nonnegotiable way to address evil and suffering in the world. To work against evil and suffering in the world apart from proclaiming the gospel of Jesus will ultimately be futile."
Furthermore, the book of Malachi says in Chapter 3:5-7, "Then I will draw near to you for judgment. I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, against the adulterers, against those who swear falsely, against those who oppress the hired worker in his wages, the widow and the fatherless, against those who thrust aside the sojourner, and do not fear me, says the LORD of hosts. For I the LORD do not change; therefore you, O children of Jacob, are not consumed. From the days of your fathers you have turned aside from my statutes and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you, says the LORD of hosts..."
If we want to evil purged from our world, we must return to the Lord, we must return to the Gospel. It is this Gospel that is the heart of the mission at Lifeline. We cannot avenge the evil that has placed over 500,000 children in US foster care just by putting them into good foster families. We cannot begin to right the atrocities that have left over 143 million children orphaned around the world devoid of the Gospel. We cannot make a dent in the epidemic that creates so many fatherless children until we return to Yahweh - the Lord of Hosts.
Two weeks ago, a sibling group of 3 children were ordered by a judge in Alabama to be returned to their biological family, a family they had been removed from in November for many issues. These children had been in one of Lifeline's growing number of foster homes. Because these homes aren't for mere altruistic or humanitarian purposes, each family agrees to proclaim the Gospel to these children and invest in their lives no matter how short or long the child's stay might be in the foster home.
As this particular family was preparing these children for their return home, the foster dad asked the oldest, a 9 year old boy, what he had learned and what he’ll remember from the time he lived with them. He answered, "to love Jesus with all my heart and to read my Bible." Then his 7 year old brother chimed in that he had learned, "to be a good boy so I can help my parents."
At Lifeline we praise the Lord for godly foster parents like the Lawsons, who are providing their home to Alabama's foster children because they embrace the Gospel and want to see it proclaimed, viewed, and lifted high. As the apostle Paul says in 2 Timothy 4:2, may we, "preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching."
The heart of Lifeline's ministry is to proclaim the Gospel to the nations through care, compassion, rescue and discipleship of the fatherless. Please pray for Lifeline that the Gospel will always be central in everything that we do. Pray that the Lord will continue to open doors for his name to be proclaimed, not only to those children in US foster care, but also to the street orphans in Puerto Plata, DR; to the institutionalized orphans living in Odessa, Ukraine; to the orphan vulnerable deaf children learning to communicate through the deaf school in Busenga, Uganda; as well as to the 143 million orphans in every hamlet, village, and people group which is representative of every tribe, tongue, and nation.
May our heart be for the great city revealed to John on the isle of Patmos, which Revelations 22:23-26 proclaims, "the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it, and its gates will never be shut by day-and there will be no night there.They will bring into it the glory and the honor of the nations." This day will be realized beloved, only because of the Gospel which we celebrate Easter Sunday, and every day the Lord gives us breath.
Has the Lord put your family in a place where you could adopt or foster a precious child in need and in so doing disciple them in the Gospel of Christ? Has the Lord burdened you with his command in James 1:27 to care for orphans in distress? If so, partner with Lifeline today. Visit LifelineChild.org to donate to the cause, to apply to adopt, to sign up for a trip through our (un)adopted ministry by visiting orphans in need, to apply to be a foster parent for a child in US foster care, to volunteer in one of many ways for the sake of orphans, and ultimately to partner with us as we seek to take the Gospel to the fatherless.
"He executes justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the sojourner, giving him food and clothing. Love the sojourner, therefore, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt. You shall fear the LORD your God. You shall serve him and hold fast to him, and by his name you shall swear." Deuteronomy 10:18-20
Oh beloved, will you allow God to use the Gospel through you to impact the life of a child? Please do not hesitate to give Lifeline a call because we are here...
On behalf of the orphans and fatherless.
Herbie Newell, Executive Director