Saturday, November 27, 2010

Rescue the Perishing

Dearest Lily,

This weekend my heart is so full ...
...of loving you, and being so very thankful for you...

...and feeling so heavy hearted about the children Daddy and I have been looking at on Reece's Rainbow.

Last night I showed Daddy the video of the mental institution in Serbia where children who are disabled are left when orphanages can no longer keep them. Daddy and I watched in horror, as images of 21 year old men, left in cribs since they were children, played across the screen. Grown men, legs atrophied, skin hanging on their fragile and growth-stunted bones...sucking their thumbs. They have never had a chance to grow up.

We watched children, left in cribs, often tied to their cribs, left alone...for hours...days...on end.


Lily, I can't get those images out of my mind.


I can't stop thinking about innocent children, who did nothing wrong in life- except arrive in this world with an extra chromosome- being placed in mental institutions with grown men and women...and no mommy and daddy to care for them.

I didn't sleep much last night.

I've been sick since Wednesday, a nasty head cold that just won't quit, coughing and aches and chills...I'm a big baby when it comes to sickness, Lily.

So all night I kept waking up coughing and asking Daddy to get me tylenol and generally feeling like a truck hit me. And lying there in the dark, those images kept playing themselves over and over in my mind.


Olga and Melanie and babies just like them...I prayed and cried and slept, prayed and cried and slept... And dreamt of buildings filled with cribs and human beings discarded, like chaff before the wind.

And some would say- well, what can you do? You can't save every orphan, and there are thousands...perhaps hundreds of thousands of orphans like the ones we watched. Where would you start?

But I would counter- how can I not do something.

How can I sit in my warm and safe and love-filled home, and not respond.


Maybe I can't go rescue every baby, every unwanted child. But I can certainly do something.


Maybe my small contribution is just a tiny drop of water in a chasm so vast, I'll never fill it myself. Maybe our gift is so small it hardly goes noticed.


But what is the alternative? To turn my head and look the other way? Pretend the images I saw weren't real, or happened in a different lifetime? Bury my head in the sand and think only good thoughts, ignore the tugging at my heart, the persistent nagging voice that says, "That could be Lily" ?


I can't do that.

I can't pretend that prayer is my only solution, that wishful thinking or hoping for a better life for those children, is my only means of helping them. I can't claim ignorance or lack of information...I've seen too much.


Maybe you could say I'm ruined, Lily.

I am ruined to the apathy and complacency that has gripped too many hearts for too long.

Including mine.


I'm ruined in that I can't wade through a frenzied and greedy crowd at a store, fighting for the last temporal and meaningless piece of plastic that might fill a heart for a day, but won't feed the soul for one minute....without picturing those tiny wasted faces, languishing in a building somewhere far away, dying for lack of love.


I can't take one beautiful, perfect, blessed moment for granted anymore ...


I can't sit back and do nothing.

As Daddy and I were lying in bed last night, your warm and tiny body nestled in between the two of us, he asked me..."What are we going to do about them, Patti?"

I said I didn't know, but that I was asking God for a pile of money. Because if I had it, I'd hop on a plane that fast and go rescue one of those babies. I don't need to pray and ask God if I'm called to it- if a child is drowning in front of you, you don't pray, you act.

I asked Daddy what he thought and he said, why don't I pray and believe God for it?

So Lily, I am praying with everything that is in me. I am giving what I can, and foregoing some really temporal, meaningless luxuries in the future. I'm not giving up on asking people to consider giving to a family in the process of adopting one of these hidden gems.

I don't care if it takes me a lifetime, I'm going to pray and give and believe and do all I can to rescue the perishing.


Matthew 25:40 Then the King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me."

And once again, just as I was about to hit publish post, this comment came to my inbox...

Thanks so much for sharing all of their answers. I do have to admit something. I came across your blog, along with a few others that you mentioned answered your questions, randomly. I don't even know or remember the day or who'se blog I happen to click on their followers..anywho...I have been following daily. I love seeing your outlook on life and your precious family. Ok so here is the fabulous part (at least to us) I have always wanted to adopt. My husband and I love kids (3 of our own) and we feel this is something we have been called to do. But after reading all of the mommas mentioned, we stumbled across Reeces Rainbows over 7 months ago. And as most of the bloggers I read say, I can't get these babies out of my head or heart. Long story short, we will be adopting one of these babies when we are ready. We would NOT have found this place or been encouraged that these precious souls need our help without your blog. Isn't it funny how God works that way. So I wanted to say a huge thanks for the beginning of changing our life...we won't be able to adopt for a couple years but when we do I know life will be so beautiful. This little soul will change our lives and all those around us, more than they will ever know. Thank you for blogging, even when it is hard. God bless you and your family!!

Holding you more closely tonight,

Mama oxox


Danielle said...

James 1:27 (New Living Translation)

27 Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.

I love you and your heart. I feel it. I get it. My heart breaks for them. I will pray with you guys.

my family said...

my heart feels terribly heavy right now also these children are on my mind so often, it seems so unfair for any innocent child to live like this. You sweet lily is such a beauty. what a precious pictures of her

Deanna said...

yeah, i finished my blog post with tears streaming down my face and then checked out yours. the tears just kept coming....
it's such a tough issue. we do what little bits monetarily we can, but then what? you're doing a wonderful job raising awareness.
totally different subject, could you email me your address?

Anonymous said...

My husband and I are in the same place as you and your husband right now, Patti. God is bringing to light His calling on our lives for the orphans. We are also praying and believing and ready for this call. I agree with you- we are called and we rescue. I have never seen the video of those men in Serbia- wow, that breaks my heart!!! Thank you, thank you for bringing this to light and exposing the darkness out there and challenging your readers to read reality. Now we have the knowledge and must act.

Love Lily! She is so sweet and adorable and the pictures are beautiful. We treasure the extra chromosome in our home. We love it and love our little guy that brings such joy to us. Oh, how my heart aches for all the aborted babies with DS. I just found out the statistic on how many are aborted. It crushed me. Thank you for another post that confirms His Word and speaks to my heart and speaks truth with love. Cara

txkerri said...

I can't seem to make it through any of your posts without crying....whether it be happy or sad tears, there are always tears. I am so happy for that one extra chromosone.....I would have never met the incredible people that I cherish so much and the people that I only know through their pictures and posts. I would have probably never come to understand how very precious life is and that every single moment with my kids is an important one. Thank God for sending me this angel with a little something special!! He has truly changed my soul.
This Christmas, one of the gifts that we are giving each of our children is a prepaid credit card that they can use to donate to the kids on Reeces Rainbow. They all have their own special kids that they have come to love. I sure wish I could bring them all home.

patsy said...

oh patti i know... i watched that video and my heart is physically aching. i , like you , am trying to help as much as can...but it just does not seem like enough. but hopefully all of our 'little bits' will help in a bigger way. i know we are not supposed to question...but i just do not understand why these sweet angels have to suffer. we will just have to continue to pray ...and it is wonderful what you and em's mom are doing to help...and we will also do what we can to help. hopefully we WILL make a difference...

Rochelle said...

I too showed that video to my husband. I am haunted by it and have been praying and seeking God's call for us in helping, whether that be to adopt one one day or just to continue to financially help others who are adopting.

Great post!

Stephanie said...

Patti I feel we are kindred spirits. Your words were my prayer last night. I will do everything I can to help these kids. It's like a fire was lite and I cannot ignore it. I'll fight for these little ones who have no voice for the rest of my life. Once you know how can you turn away!!! As for the email you received!!! BLESS THEM!!!!!!!! How wonderful! I pray that their time to adopt come quickly. Another little life saved. Another miracle!

nicole said...

Patti ~ what you wrote is exactly how I've been feeling since I found Reece's Rainbow. We must do something to rescue these babes and yes, prayer is the first step, but not the only. I can only imagine how much more these little ones break your heart imagining that it could be Lily. Sometimes I am bewildered at how merciful and patient our God is because he sees all these injustices in full detail, and yet he waits on us to help them. Right now, I think my calling is to raise awareness for these babies ~ but oh, how I would love to go grab one. What else in life matters but to pour yourself out for another soul and make the love of God tangible to them? Please dear Lord, show me the way to fulfill the desire you've placed in my heart to save "one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine".

Mrs. K said...

Oh that little Lily Imp. How is it possible Lily and Jackson and Abbi can get cuter each time I see a new picture of them?

I love seeing pictures of Sam and Jason as well. Hardly ever see pictures of them so it is great to see them this time.

Unknown said...

Oh Patti, thank you so much for continually sharing your heart and challenging me. I am praying with you and for you.

Elissa said...

I meant to tell you that after I went to Deanna's blog I realized it was one I used to check in on daily! I am so excited to see them hopefully bring Melanie home. I am still trying to raise some more money!

Sarah said...

Lily looks so much like her Dad!!

Patti, I can't stop thinking about Reece's Rainbow. When I was 24, I ived in Moscow, Russia and worked at the volunteered at a orphanage once with Patch Adams (the real one goes on clown tours to orphanages all over the world) and it changed my life. I remember the room where the special needs kids were and they were quite neglected. I remember holding one little boy with two fingers and thought wow, this is the only reason he is here, I bet.

Anyway, I just wanted to know you've touched my heart as I haven't thought about those children in so long and I feel awful about it. It makes me sick that I care about clothes and skin care when children don't even have mothers.