A Class, a Committee, and an Orphanage
Last Sunday our church experienced a baptism blessing for a young woman named Destiny. I remember kneeling in the aisle with my arm around Joe, Destiny’s grandfather, while we prayed.
This is the story of how God worked to help Destiny find her destiny as a disciple. All it took was a single granddad raising a teenage girl, a mission committee thinking outside the box, an orphanage in Peru, and a ladies’ Bible class living out their faith in pretty radical ways. You need to hear this story because, well … it’s inspiring. What you do matters. Your people need to know that what they do matters. We all have a part to play in God’s mission to make disciples.
Here is how it happened for Destiny.
My wife and a woman named Patty Williams grew up in church together, and when Patty and her husband Joe started coming back to church, we reconnected. They were raising their grandkids, one of whom was pre-teen Destiny. Life was hard. Hard economically and hard as grandparents raising teenagers again. Life became much harder when Patty died of heart disease complications. But Joe kept loving his grandchildren, bringing them to church, and trying to instill faith.
Now there is an orphanage in Peru that Christians have been supporting for several years. Not only with money, but by taking trips to love the children there and share the story of Jesus. Many of these children have become Christians, so a church was established at the orphanage.
Joe’s church has a pretty amazing mission committee that strongly encourages church members to go on mission trips that the church helps fund. One of these mission trips included the orphanage in Peru. And this is where the womens’ Bible class comes into the story: a class consisting of mostly “older” sisters. Mostly single, widowed, divorced, or without believing spouses. They are serious about Bible study and serious about living out what they learn. They even go on mission trips together.
So when a trip to Peru was announced, the now 14-year-old Destiny wanted to go. We have couples, families, and single adults who go. But never had a young teenager wanted to go who had never been out of the country, and had no money. The mission committee still took her application, some families even offered to “adopt” Destiny for the trip, and the ladies’ class decided to support Destiny as well. They helped her get a passport, covered part of the trip expense, and sheltered her with prayer.
So Destiny went. She loved on those kids, helped out, and watched this church grow. She also saw baptisms as people gave their lives to Jesus, so this summer in Peru, one of Destiny’s mission dads baptized her in the ocean.
All it took was a single granddad raising his granddaughter, a mission committee that was more about mission than money, a ladies’ class that was radically committed to living out their faith, and an orphanage in Peru.
God used all of these people to help Destiny find her destiny as a child of God.
Well done, God. Well done.