Reflections on Summit VI

I don’t believe I’ve ever seen God’s hand so evidently at work as at Summit VI last week.   So many people came ready to give much…and so many came ready to receive.  It seemed that everyone at Summit did both, and the resulting energy, enthusiasm and passion for Christ and for the orphan could hardly have been more poignant or sweet.

Countless individuals have prayed for Summit for months, and we rejoice in prayers answered beyond what we could have asked or imagined.

But even more, we now pray that seeds sown and cultivated at Summit will grow to produce much good fruit over decades to come.  That relationships forged become lasting partnership, ideas born become concrete choices, passions stirred become faithful action.

For those impacted by Summit, I’d like to share a few of the thoughts I’ve been reminding myself of over the days since Summit, particularly as we ponder steps each of us may be called to take in response.

Don’t let a big vision keep you from a small obedience. It can be thrilling to catch the vision for a great undertaking, from building a new ministry to becoming a foster parent.  Yet it can also be paralyzing, especially as we consider all it would take to bring it to completion.  But that’s not God’s call to us today.  His call, most often, is to a little act of faithfulness today, a single step forward.  All that lies on the road beyond the present is God’s business.  Our responsibility is to the one action we can take today.

Be fervent in prayer. To draw near to an orphan is to draw near to God.  Whether via adoption, orphan ministry, or otherwise, we come—like Moses did—to stand on holy ground.  So we must always tread forward with deep reverence and supplication.  Equally important, if God cares deeply about this work, we ought to keep in mind that His enemy does as well.  As much as any aspect of life, this battle is not against flesh and blood.

Walk the road with others. Jesus sent his disciples out in pairs, and Paul never traveled alone.  If God is calling you to deeper ministry to the fatherless, I’m confident He wants you to engage it with co-laborers, mentors and other allies.  Seek these out, both in your church and community, and also as a member of the growing community of the Christian Alliance for Orphans.

Never lose connection to the one Source that’s good for the long journey. The world’s need is vast, and we have every reason to weep over it as Jesus did at the tomb of Lazarus.   But this alone will not sustain us for the distance, especially as we encounter disappointments and difficulty.  The world’s great need will always outstrip our enthusiasm to solve it.  The only wellspring that will never run dry is to draw always from the unfathomed love of our God, who pursued us, defends us, and calls us His own.  “We love because He first loved us.”