Orphaned and Abandoned

Orphaned and Abandoned. Two words you hear a lot here. It started on the plane. The plane. American Airlines taking a plane almost full of white faces and folks wearing t-shirts with screen prints about Haiti’s Earthquake. Almost like a youth group going on spring break. I couldn’t help but think that we would all be taking back much more than we would be giving.

This stories of the children started on the plane. Great older southern gentlemen with a fabulous heart for the hurting. He told me that he had come down three days after the earthquake. He was at the airport and there was a fight that started outside the gate in the street. A few went to see what was happening. There was an eight year old little girl there who was with a woman. One group said this woman was selling this little girl for sex for money. But the woman said these men where trying to steal her daughter. No one knew who to believe, and the woman took the little girl away. Crying.

The man said he didn’t know what to do other than just pray that God would be with the little girl. That His spirit would go with her and keep her safe.

An hour later the girl came back to the airport exit gate. Wailing. Screaming. All she could say was: “She is not my mother.”

He said she was so traumatized that she couldn’t remember her last name. She had been

Orphaned. Abandoned.

Driving back from picking up our final team member from the airport, I saw him again. His smile was captivating. His spirit was warm. His name was Garrison. Amber and I had tried to buy some water earlier that day that caused a yelling match at the store. Beside me the whole time was Garrison. Holding my hand tightly. He was eyeing the pastry in the glass. I was so wanting to buy it for him. Precious he is.

So I saw him and I turned to Dr. Jeudy. What is his story? Who is his mother?

He has none.

What do you mean?

No mother. No father. He is Orphaned.

He was Abandoned.

Who cares for him?

We do.

Lord, Father God. You who are bigger than any pain we can imagine. Lighter than any darkness we can walk into. More powerful than an earthquake. The Father of the Fatherless and the Shepard for the Abandoned. Take these children tonight who have been orphaned because of this tragedy and hold them close. Help them to feel the depths of your love like no one else in the world can tonight. They are your special ones. Hold them tight.