For the One
One big event to reach one kid at a time
63 lively kids.
39 passionate volunteers.
34 exhausted foster parents.
13 community partners.
4 busy hours.
1 incredible night.
Our mission is to train church leaders to develop a foster care, adoption, and support ministry, and we love it when these orphan care churches come together to serve their community! This spring our team had the opportunity to host a Foster Family Appreciation Night with local community partners. The collaboration was astounding!
- Chick-fil-a provided a delicious meal,
- Life School offered their building,
- SWAGG Programs planned fun and engaging children’s activities,
- John 4 Ministries brought balloon animals,
- Churches sent volunteers,
- And other local businesses provided giveaways for the foster parents!
The purpose of the night was to encourage and support the foster families in our backyard of Ellis County, TX. We offered free dinner for the whole family, activities for the children, and fellowship for the adults! There were smiles and laughter all around!
Events like this are both exciting and exhausting, but they become worth it when even one parent or child walks away encouraged. The impact of a ministry cannot be grasped with numbers alone. Impact is made and measured one child, one life, one story at a time.
Valorie was looking forward to volunteering at the Foster Family Appreciation Night with much anticipation! She is involved in her church’s orphan care ministry and jumped at the opportunity to serve her community! She had only one hesitation about the night: teenagers. Valorie was placed with the 12-18 year olds and was truthfully a little uncomfortable. Kids, no problem! Teenagers, now that’s a different story!
As the youth began to arrive, she noticed that two girls in particular hit if off right away. We will call them Sarah and Ashley. The girls had met this last summer at a camp called Royal Family Kids. They made it very clear right off the bat that they had no interest in the activities that were planned for the night. They were running around, stalling in the bathroom, and doing anything they could to separate themselves from the group. Valorie was determined to make a connection, so she asked Sarah and Ashley to play cards. Despite some reluctance and eye rolls, they agreed.
When Valorie didn’t give up, Sarah began to open up. She shared about her biological family, her painful story, and her hopes of being adopted soon. Valorie listened with empathy and when the door opened, she was able to encourage Sarah, speak the Gospel to her, and pray with her! Valorie said, “By the time we finished the prayer, she had a big smile on her face and she hugged me. It was just a completely different demeanor than when she had come in. I praise God for the opportunity and that He appeared to be working in her heart. It has definitely stirred in me a deeper desire to be more involved in this ministry.”
No matter how big an organization grows, orphan care is always for the one. It never stops being about that one child who needs a positive encounter. It never stops looking like ministry. It never stops reaching our own backyard.
For the one. It’s why we do what we do. That “even in just a smile; they would feel the Father’s love.” (For The One, Brian & Jenn Johnson)
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