Africa on my heart

I'm reading a book right now called Passport Through Darkness. It is opening my eyes to the horror of what is going on in Sudan, specifically- but elsewhere, too. Read it and you'll see what I mean. I feel a little undone by it all~ praying so much and asking God what else we can do (we give a little, here and there, and we pray... but- surely there is something else we should be doing.)

Here are a couple of excerpts from the book:

We learned that while sexual slavery is most commonly associated with Southeast Asia, it is actually growing faster in Eastern Europe and Africa than anywhere else in the world. This is mostly because of the swelling population of orphans and street children, the "throwaways".

Most of the churches we visited focused focused on salvation, forgiveness, Bible studies, and doing good works-- almost exclusively programmatic things taking place within their four walls. We could find none that taught about the reality of extreme poverty, how vulnerable those conditions made women and children to trafficking, or about a biblical response required from the church.

In a ten-month period, we lost 278 orphans. The number-one cause of death was not thirst, not malnutrition, not disease. It was animal attacks, mostly by wild dogs or hyenas.

To keep from being eaten in the night, many of our homeless orphans slept in trees. Tragically, some of them fell from their bed branches to their deaths.

That image in my mind juxtaposed against the knowledge that my own children are tucked safely in their beds tonight in our home? It is so unsettling to me.

* * *

Today I clicked on a couple of news videos about the drought going on in East Africa and my heart is heavy for the people there, too-- specifically the women and the children.

Tonight I shared with the kids a little about the book I've been reading; I want them to know because they are faithful little prayer warriors, and their faith is great and they pray big prayers. I showed them one of the videos I saw today, and then we gathered on the couch and prayed together as a family. Each of the kids prayed, and then I closed in prayer. As I finished my prayer, Ella interjected one final prayer:

"And Jesus? When the (malnourished) babies do die, and they get to heaven, I pray that you would just take them onto your lap, into your arms, and tell them how much you love them. Amen."

I loved that, and I wanted to remember it.

Shortly after that the kids decided to start saving money for Africa, so there's a jar sitting on our table that now holds coins emptied from piggy banks and they are full of plans to decorate that jar tomorrow.


  1. Animal attacks? That shocked me. I would have guessed malnutrition. :( Our world is SO cushy shames me.

  2. Love you and your heart, girlfriend.

    I am going to order and read this. God has been working on heart in this to not take all we have for granted. I want to DO something! i have been thinking so much back to when we were on the mission field and life just was lived differently. We are talking about ways live different right where we are to free up more money etc. I so get caught up in the ease of my life.

    I love how you always get the kids involved too. The jar is such a simple but practical way for them to help.

  3. Ouch. What terrible realities.

    I love Ella's prayer. So perfect.


  4. wow, what a powerful prayer warrior you have in Ella. I know that Jesus heard her prayer and He is doing just what she asked of Him.
    Thanks for sharing.


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