Ways to Love and Help Vulnerable Kids/Families – Rebekah Weigel (CarePortal)

CarePortal presentation w/Rebekah Weigel (video)

Hey TD!

Here’s the video of V4V Friday’s presentation on how we can start getting involved in being the hands and feet of the Lord by helping vulnerable children and families in our communities.  It’s practical, doable, and impactful, and will allow us to further fulfill our calling and mandate to help the vulnerable in Jesus’ Name!  It can be done by any fellowship group, small group, or group of friends.

Rebekah Weigel has a strong passion to see the Church return to the front of child welfare, and has been working to educate and mobilize churches in LA County to care for vulnerable children and families.

She also works with her husband, Josh, in the entertainment industry as a producer and writer.  They have been married 23 years and have fostered and adopted 3 of their 6 children.

CarePortal (a platform of The Global Orphan Project) is a technology platform that connects vulnerable children and families to people who have something to give. Social workers uncover the needs. CarePortal makes local churches aware, giving them a real-time opportunity to respond.

 

 

 

Ember Ngur’s Powerful Testimony and Q&A (mp3)

 

Ember’s Testimony/Q&A (mp3)

Hey TD!

Wow, what a powerful and moving V4V weekend that was for those who participated.  God was in our midst stirring our hearts and challenging the way we live our lives. One highlight was Ember Ngur’s sharing and Q&A at the Hsiehs’ home on Saturday.

Ember Ngur’s Testimony/Q&A

0:00 – 15:12  Ember’s Story

Q&A

15:39 – What happens to kids after doing foster therapy?

16:35 – How did you get involved with CarePortal?

17:45 – Are there qualifications for fostering? What are they?

18:37 – Why did you move to CA?

*19:35 – Where there times when you didn’t want to love someone? How did you overcome it? Did you have any kids that were hard to love?

*23:06 – What kind of person was your father like? The kind of person who can listen to God’s plan and do everything. What did you do after?

27:38 – What are your siblings doing?

30:00 – Did you have a community to support your family in fostering?

30:54 – Did all your siblings respond well for taking in foster children?

31:50 – Fostering is supposed to help kids. Why are the statistics so bad with respect to the kids who have gone through foster care?

*33:21 – What would you say to a youth group like ours – suburban, middle class, cautious, achievement oriented, etc.? Any “kick-in-the-pants” charge or encouragement for us?

39:00 – Do you have any amazing stories of transformation where the kids completely turned their lives around?

41:33 – How did you guys approach the kids that faced a lot of trauma and weren’t really connected with society?

*43:31 – “Comfortable” is our church’s middle name. Can you just give us what you really want to say – what the Lord wants you to tell us, without worrying about offending us. In other words, preach it, Sista!

46:10 – With the last young man you mentioned, how did he do after leaving home after a year? Do children know that they just have to go? Or does it cause more feelings of loss after being in a beautiful home and then having to leave?

48:58 – How did differences in culture (Nigerian/American) affect how your family fostered?

52:03 – The stats on fostering (racially)

*54:34 – Ember leads a powerful and stirring time of prayer and beseeching God on TD’s behalf, that God would spectacularly transform the members of TD into courageous Christ-followers and Christ-ambassadors.

* The entire Q&A is worth listening to, and these are particularly poignant.

All I Want For Christmas …

Show Hope

Hey TD,

If I had to choose a “verse of the year” for me, it’s a no-brainer.  Hands down it’s James 1:27:

“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

This Christmas season has been a daily deluge of that for me and my family as we work through the extremely extensive adoption process.  Being buried in paperwork can sometimes obscure the vision of what it is we’re trying to do.

Perhaps that’s why I found myself tearing up in my car when I listened to “All I Want For Christmas” by 5-time Grammy Award winner, Steven Curtis Chapman, a couple of weeks ago.  It was a great reminder of why God gave His church the James 1:27 command and who it is we are to be helping in His Name.

I hope you’ll listen to the lyrics and begin praying for the orphaned children with special needs in China that we’ll be seeking to help during the upcoming Voiceless for the Voiceless (V4V) campaign that TD will be engaging in, in the near future.  Enjoy! – Arthur

 

These Verses Changed My Life

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Hey TD!

Don’t you love kids?  I do.  There is this raw, real, unpolished, unpretentious, unpackaged authenticity and realness to them, for better or for worse! 🙂  I also love young spiritual children as well (though they may be chronologically older, even adult-aged).  They too can have that wide-eyed hungry (even naive), teachable way about them that is refreshing and alive.  I love being around real life like that.  But with having children (biologically or spiritually) comes an enormous amount of spiritual responsibility.

It is when I had my first child, Nathaniel, that this hit me like a lightning bolt.  I read Deuteronomy 6:4-9, and it changed my life’s focus, calling, and passion.  Here it is:

“Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as [b]frontals [c]on your forehead.You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

There they were, my marching orders from the Commander Himself.  My duty and calling as the father to my children was to first and foremost teach and train them to walk with the Lord, even before my responsibilities to train and take care of them physically, socially, academically, etc.  I have been charged to constantly bring them before the voice, heart, desires, and will of our God Almighty, through the priceless gift of His matchless Word; and I am to do it passionately, authentically, creatively, and in heavy doses.  Every chance that I get.  Waking.  Sleeping.  Walking.  Playing.  Eating.  Talking.  Traveling.  Every chance that I get.  That was really the underlying impetus behind us homeschooling them.

That’s why I get so excited when I see a young couple like Robert and Kathy take that charge to heart as well, as they begin exposing their daughter to God’s Word at her young age (these pics are the first pics of Hannah “doing” Bible study 🙂 wink, wink).  They know that even though she’s the cutest little thing (did you see her last night??? Sooooo cute!), God’s Word tells us the truth: little Hannah is a born-sinner, depraved at her core.  Little Hannah needs a Savior and needs to come to Jesus and to grow in His grace.  And that cannot happen without the power of His Word.

And you cannot grow in grace without the power of His Word either.  Deuteronomy 6:4-9 applies to YOU.  YOU need to talk of His Word when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise up.  YOU need to bind them as a sign on your hand and as frontals on your forehead.  YOU need to write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

As a spiritual father to some of you, and a spiritual uncle to most of you, I charge you and plead with you to examine the life you’re living, who you’re living it with, the way you spend your time, the activities you engage in, the conversations you have, etc. Then, I ask you to do some re-organizing of your life to make more time to study, sit under, meditate on, pray through … God’s Word.

Do it this summer, so that by the time you return to school, more time in His Word will be ingrained into your schedule! – Arthur