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Friday, January 13, 2012

My burdened heart...


I have missed several days of blogging this week.  I have so many topics I could blog about, but sometimes I don’t know which one to share.  Finally, He has burdened my heart to share this with you, today.

There are many positive and rewarding aspects of being involved with the adoption of Deaf and hard-of-hearing (HOH) children and their families.
  I LOVE seeing God connect families with their Deaf/HOH sons and daughters.  I LOVE watching these sons and daughters, many with limited to no language at all, begin to thrive in their new families rich in ASL.  I LOVE sharing resources with families who adopt Deaf/HOH children that will help them help their children reach their full potential.  I LOVE watching these families grow in their own relationship with their Lord through the adoption process.  I LOVE being able to help these families raise the funds necessary for them to bring their Deaf/HOH children home.  I LOVE watching God draw these children into His forever family and then send them out to share His story with those like them.
But…

My heart ache’s for the Deaf/HOH children who will never be adopted.
  My heart ache’s for the Deaf/HOH children aging out of the limited social welfare system in the countries where they live.  My heart ache’s when I see the faces of these older Deaf/HOH children labeled “URGENT – AGING OUT”.   I was overwhelmed with heart ache this past week as I searched for the Deaf/HOH children that are “waiting” to be adopted.  On one website photos of Deaf/HOH children who had missed their window of opportunity for adoption were now labeled

 “URGENT REQUEST – AGED OUT – PLEASE PRAY!” 

These children were from China.  The picture of what happens to these precious Deaf/HOH children who “age out”—at the age of 14 in China and various other ages in other countries—is not a pretty one.  It is not one I like to dwell on, and I try my best to keep my mind from drifting there long enough to create an indelible image.  But, there is no doubt God has placed this burden for them on my heart.  Such burden, this past week, that I sent out a desperate email to a few families and individuals I know who share this burden; urgently requesting them to join me in praying for some way to change these atrocities.   I will not go into detail here about the horrific plight of these children who “age out” of the system, but if you are interested in knowing more check out the post on the Love Without Boundaries website at http://www.lwbcommunity.org/adoption-of-older-children.  One thing to keep in mind, this article is based on what happens to the hearing children who “age out”; I am convinced what happens to the Deaf children—with  very little ability to communicate about anything to anyone—the violence against them would be much worse.  

The building of the vocational trade school (VTS) in Liberia, has given me much insight into what could possibly be done to aid these older children in other countries.  Liberia does not have laws limiting how long a child can live in an orphanage.  At the Deaf Mission in Liberia there are Deaf/HOH twentysomethings still residing there and attending school. 

One friend emailed back to ask what ideas I had in mind.
  Her family has adopted Deaf/HOH children twice from China.  Very quickly, in response, the Lord gave me some basic goals an “aging out” home/school for Deaf/HOH children might offer.  Since many of these "aging out" children will still be without language there would need to be indigenous manual language taught in the aging out home/school for them.  Ideally, indigenous Deaf adults/families would be utilized for this and for possible fostering of these children.  It might not be a full-time foster family, because of cost and other legalities, but at least some time where these older children could experience some semblance of "family."  Vocational trades and "life skills" would also be taught in this home/school for children no longer welcome in their government institutions.  In addition, if we are looking at starting something like this in China, or any country for that matter, the "aging out" home/school should be located near a larger city for better access to greater resources. 
I don’t know God’s timing for something like this.  I do know He is all over the building of the Vocational Trade School in Liberia ( I will share more about this endeavor, soon) and I have to believe He will use some of what I learn in this process to be replicated in other places/countries. 

Please join me and others in praying for a complete understanding of how, when, where, a home/school could be started to prevent the “aged out” Deaf/HOH children from being thrown out on the streets as refuse.
 
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Scriptures that are challenging and encouraging me, today!

Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2


Lord, you have heard what the poor people want. Do what they ask, and listen to them.
 Protect the orphans and put an end to suffering so they will no longer be afraid of evil people. Psalm 10:17-18


For he will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted who have no one to help. He will take pity on the weak and the needy and save the needy from death. He will rescue them from oppression and violence,
for precious is their blood in his sight. Psalm 72:12-14


Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. James 1:27


God sets the lonely in families.  Psalm 68:6

2 comments:

  1. Becky some great ideas! I pray for you weekly, that the Holy Spirit will show you each step to make.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Traci! That is the only way I will know which way to go!

    ReplyDelete