One Who Did Not Come from Your Knee

Among the many remarkable individuals I met at the Lausanne Congress was an Ethiopian doctor named Henok.  His young-looking face and bright eyes hinted at the warm and gentle spirit one encounters in speaking with him.  Henok studied medicine in Germany.  But unlike many from Africa who receive professional training in the West, Henok decided to return with his skills to his homeland with a heart for his countrymen and the orphans of Ethiopia.

While practicing medicine, Henok also helps his wife oversee a ministry that cares for more than 600 Ethiopian orphans.  But while Henok points to the necessity of this kind of massive-scale care for orphans amidst the current orphan crisis in his country, he desires to see a day when it will rendered obsolete by the love of the Church.

He expressed, “We have a phrase in Amharic, ‘One who did not come from your knee.’  It means a child not of one’s own womb.”  Henok explained that Ethiopians rarely will care for children not related by blood.   But, he said with a smile that carried strength despite its sadness, “We want to break that.”  He prays to see a culture of adoption grow among Ethiopian believers, just as it is growing among American Christians.  Let’s join him in this prayer.