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Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in distress.

James 1:27

 
  

Let’s start a Valentine’s Day Revolution!

On Valentine’s Day, it is natural to focus our attention on those we love.  However, I would like to challenge us to be just as aware of those who desperately need love.  It is easier to ignore the pain that Valentine’s Day invokes for some people than to enter into the distress of the heartbroken, isolated, and lonely.  Let’s deliberately and intently search for people that we can show God’s gracious compassion and unrelenting love.  Let’s look for practical ways to demonstrate this love and “look after” those living with a relationship void. 

Please share this idea with your friends: Remember orphans, widows, and the heartbroken on Valentine’s Day.

 

If you are in emotional pain, please know that there is hope.  God is “closer to you than the blood in your veins.”  Many encouraging words can be found on my Dad’s blog, Your Story Matters.

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Defend the weak & the fatherless;
 
uphold the cause of the poor
 
& the oppressed.
~
Psalm 82:3
 
 
 
Ty Osman II had a passion for helping the poor.  He developed this passion by imitating his parents, who began taking him with them on their annual mission trips to Honduras when he was ten years old.  Ty’s family returned to the same village, and over the years Ty became extremely attached to the children.  When they saw one another, it seemed as though they had never been apart.  This year, those children will be asking the question, “Where is Ty?”  While we can hope their heartache will be eased by knowing Ty is in a glorious place, we can continue Ty’s work by contributing to the needs of the orphans.
 ~
Both Hands, an amazing non-profit organization that helps both orphans and widows, is honoring Ty and providing us with a way to contribute. Here is information from their website:
Nashville Big Build 2012 in Memory of Ty Osman II
A team of volunteers will be working on a widow’s house to help raise money for an orphanage in Honduras. 550 children live and attend school on the Escalon Project Campus in La Entrada, Honduras.100% of the money raised from our Nashville Big Build project will help provide education, food, housing, and facilities for this orphanage.
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Since Ms. Sharon’s husband passed away, it has become difficult to keep up with the necessary improvements and repairs to her home.

So on April 14, a team of volunteers will be working on her home. Think of fundraisers where people raise sponsorship for a charity golf tournament or 5K race. Only with this project, instead of golfing or running, we’ll be helping a widow in need.

The widow benefits, an orphanage in Honduras is blessed, and a group of individuals are able to spend the day serving others. The more money raised, the more children can be provided for through this orphanage in Honduras.
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Ty Osman II was a young man of character with a true servant’s heart. He brought laughter and joy to everyone he met. Ty passionately served others, and in all things, he glorified the Lord. He took annual trips with his family to serve at an orphanage. The 2012 Nashville Big Build Project is named in memory of Ty Osman II.
This past Sunday, I visited Ty’s church where the preacher Dean Barham showed us a way that all of us can give more. He told us that the early Christians would fast for a few days and then give the money they saved to those in need.
And if there is among them any that is poor and needy, and if they have no spare food, they fast two or three days in order to supply to the needy their lack of food.
–The Apology of Aristides ~ 130 AD
I would like to propose a challenge: for the next month, let’s fast from “fast food” and give that money to continue Ty’s love and work with the orphans in Honduras. 
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How can you help?
Join the Both Hands Team for the Nashville Big Build
In Memory of Ty Osman II!~
 

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Religion that God our Father accepts
as pure and faultless is this:
to look after orphans and widows ….
James 1:27
  
 
Let’s have a Valentine’s Day Revolution!
 
On Valentine’s Day, it is natural to focus our attention on those we love. However, I would like to challenge us to be just as aware of those who desperately need love.  It is easier to ignore the pain that Valentine’s Day invokes for some people than to enter into the distress of the heartbroken, isolated, and lonely.  Let’s deliberately and intently search for people that we can show God’s gracious compassion and unrelenting love.  We can look for practical ways to demonstrate this love and “look after” those living with a relationship void. 

Help me bring about a Valentine’s Day Revolution!  Please share this idea with your friends: Remember orphans, widows, and the heartbroken on Valentine’s Day. 

Here are three specific ways we can “look after orphans and widows in their distress”:

1) The New Hope Foundation cares for precious Chinese orphans with disabilities.  Click here for more information and to donate. (See comment section for recent information from their newsletter.)

2) Volunteer at a homeless shelter, particularly one that has women and children.  Often, these children, while not actual orphans, are starved for attention and time. (This idea is from my sister Margy who serves this way in Nashville.) 

3) I know of a young widow who needs our help.  This December, my friend Angela’s thirty-four-year-old brother Joshua died suddenly from a heart problem.  His wife Jennie is devastated.  She needs encouragement and financial provision.  Jennie was left without life insurance and with large medical debt.  Any help would be appreciated. 

The Joshua Wilkison Memorial Fund                                      
In the name of: Jennie Wilkison
Cleveland Bradley County Teachers Federal Credit Union
420 Central Avenue Northwest  
Cleveland, TN 37311-4922
(423) 479-6393 (for debit cards)
Via Nancy Trotter
 
For cards of encouragement:
Jennie Wilkison
c/o Angela Thomas
1727 George Whittaker Lane
Knoxville, TN 37931
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If you are reading this and you are heartbroken, isolated, or lonely, please know that there is hope.  God is close to the brokenhearted and he saves those who are crushed in spirit (Psalm 34:18).  Many encouraging words can be found on my Dad’s blog, Your Story Matters.
 

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Religion that God our Father
accepts as pure and faultless is this:
to look after orphans and widows ….
James 1:27
 
 
For the past few years, I have been hearing about an Advent Conspiracy, which is a holistic approach to Christmas.  I would like to propose a Valentine’s Day Conspiracy:  let’s turn Valentine’s Day into a day where we reach out to and comfort those who suffer from a relationship void.  This year, consider how you might love and care for:
–  single parents 
–  those who have lost a spouse or parent
–  those who live with loneliness 
 
Valentine’s Day must surely be an even lonelier time for these literal or figurative widows and orphans.  I invite you to join in this conspiracy to help them feel the passion of God’s love on this day.
 
 
Adapted from my Valentine’s Day post 2009.

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I was sick and you looked after me.        
Matthew 25:36
 

For the past eight years, my friends Rebecca and Charles Dorris have been involved in helping orphans.  They have adopted three daughters from China, and they also actively support an orphanage in China.  New Hope Foundation cares for sick and physically disabled babies who have been abandoned.  This orphanage was founded by Dr. Joyce and Robin Hill, a medical doctor and an engineer, who are spending their retirement years serving “the least of these”  (Matthew 25:40).

This orphanage needs our help.  They have only half of the operating cost needed for the month of May.  Rebecca has written a letter about these needs, which can be read in the comment section.  Please read her letter and prayerfully consider how you can help these sweet and sick babies in China.

 
The Dorris Family with Dr. Joyce and Robin Hill

The Dorris Family with Dr. Joyce and Robin Hill

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Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress….  James 1:27
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Donations may be given online or by check
Be sure to note that the donation is for New Hope Foundation.

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