Every Wednesday, our classes are cut a bit short and we have a chapel service after second period at school. Today, it was focusing on praising God. We sang quite a few praise songs and then they opened up the mic to any students who wanted to share. Some amazing stories. The last one was shared by one of the sophomores... I don't think there was a dry eye in the room...
She is the sister of one of my friends. His family adopted her a few years ago from Bela*rus. She was either 11 or 12 at the time she was adopted and is now 17.
She got up and took the mic as she composed herself and started by saying, "I was once an orphan."
With tears streaming down her face, she said something along the lines of, "I want to thank my family because I know I don't always seem grateful, but I want you to know how grateful I really am. If it weren't for you, if I was still an orphan, I would be on the streets. You see, when you turn 17 in Bela*rus, you are kicked out of the orphanage. You are homeless with no one to go to. Yet, I have a family. I'm not on the streets in Bela*rus because of them." Now sobbing, she got out the words, "I love you guys and I thank you so much, even though you might not always know it."
So often, the babies get all the attention. But what about the older kids? The older kids who are about to age out of the system and have little hope unless they are adopted? They will literally be on the streets. Unless they are adopted. They deserve a hope and a future. They deserve a family, too.
Life on the streets... I don't even want to bring myself to think about what that might include. I pray that families are raised up to not only adopt the little ones, but the older ones, too. Everyone deserves a family... no one should have to face being kicked out of an orphanage to be on the streets.
Just feeling convicted today..