Imagine waking up each morning surrounded by people, but totally alone.

Imagine walking to and from school and home each day knowing that you could disappear and no one would really care.

Imagine going to bed at night without saying goodnight to anyone.

Imagine the doors being opened for you, and walking out into the world without any support system, without anyone to advocate for you, anyone to fight on your behalf. 

Imagine being thrust into adulthood without the tools necessary to survive.

Imagine a world full of light into which you cannot walk.

Imagine being trapped in darkness with no real hope.



The plight of those without family is more real to me than it’s ever been before. I’ve known the statistics for a long time – Girls who ago out of an orphanage are 60% more likely to end up in prostitution. Boys who age out are 70% more likely to end up in prison. The suicide rate for children who have exited an orphanage without a support system are sky-high.

I knew these things, but I’d never touched them.

This is a fight that we cannot ignore. I’m a huge proponent of adoption. I absolutely believe that adoption is a necessary and important tool in orphan care. I’m also, however, passionate about supporting orphans within their own countries. We must help them from both ends of this spectrum.

I do believe that it’s best for children to be raised in their own countries, amidst their own cultures. I also believe that’s not always possible, and for those who are called, I fully support you in your quest for adoption.

There has to be more, though. We must advocate for the fatherless with zeal, and we cannot give up on this quest because too much is at stake. I heard it said not long ago that growing up without a family is toxic to a child’s soul. There is, perhaps, no greater loneliness than that of knowing that no one cares. 

This isn’t a post that’s meant to incite guilt. The truth is, I don’t really know what the next step is for our family. When we put “K” on the plane next week, what happens next?

I don’t know. But I’m asking and I’m seeking, because now I know and once you know the truth, action is required.

The orphan crisis is big – it’s so big. Bigger than any one person, or any one organization. But results are tangible, and there is hope to be found. (<—Click this to tweetHope may be slow, but it’s alive and it’s real and it’s the only thing that can shatter the darkness.

All I ask today is that you imagine the feeling of being totally and completely alone. Imagine,  just for a second.

What can you do?

What can I do?

What difference could we make in this world if we weren’t afraid to try? 

Compassion Bloggers in Philippines

A few years ago I started reading about a ministry called Compassion International.  And I dismissed it.

I had seen the ads on television for child sponsorship programs before.  You know, the ones with a tearful celebrity begging you to give up one cup of coffee every day so a child could eat.  Not that I don’t think those programs are wonderful, but I was just desensitized to the weepy pitch.  So when blog post after blog post began popping up about Compassion, my first reaction was to ignore them.

I hate jumping on bandwagons and this seemed like an online Christian bandwagon.  I’m revealing a bit of evidence of my sad, stubborn little heart to you all today…

After the Compassion bloggers went to India, though, I began to take notice of this organization a little more.  I was impressed by several things -first, Compassion is serious about meeting the needs of children.  Sponsorship money goes to the child and is used honestly and wisely and lovingly to make sure that children living in poverty are given hope for the future.

Second, the hearts behind those involved with Compassion are so humble, tender and filled with love.  Compassion has a purpose to “release children from poverty in Jesus’ name.”  They take this purpose seriously and it really made an impression on me.

Finally, I couldn’t help but be impressed by how well this ministry utilized social media for the greater good of humanity.  I’m not sure you’ll find another organization that is better utilizing social media tools like Twitter, Facebook and blogging to bring hope, healing, faith and love to the most remote areas of the world.  I’m seriously amazed by what they do.

So, I finally got over my silly pride and we sponsored a child from the Philippines named Jonri, and what a blessing it has been.  The kids LOVE to get letters from Jonri and to draw pictures in return.  Admittedly we have not done a good job of consistently writing him and we are working on communicating with him more.  But it has blessed our family to know that Jonri is being loved and cared for and he is definately prayed for.

This week, Compassion has another group of lovely bloggers touring none other than the Philippines and the stories coming out of the country are beautiful and moving.  You will be blessed to follow their journey.  And if you feel led to sponsor a child, you can rest assured your money is not squandered or wasted.  It is well spent and you will be impacting a child’s life forever.

That’s a bandwagon that’s totally worth jumping on, in my opinion.

The Candy Shop and An Opportunity

When Lee and I first moved to St. Louis, the land in which I spent most of my formative years, we immediately set out to develop new relationships as a married couple.  I did not want to only think of St. Louis as my childhood home, though it felt that way since I spent six years in Texas learning the culture and laws of that strange land.

Big Hair. Big Accents. Big Belt Buckles. Big Hearts.

One of the first families we met was the Krosley family and we fell in love with them from the start.  They were fun, giving, kind and one life step ahead of us.  They had three young kids, we had a baby.  We looked up to the Krosley’s in every sense.

We worked closely with the Krosley’s to develop a new ministry in our church geared toward young married couples and in our time with them we learned of their heart for adoption.  We prayed with them as they waited to adopt from China and we rejoiced when God answered their prayer in a mighty way with their fourth child – a little boy they named Andrew.

In the eight years that we’ve known the Krosley’s, we’ve watched their children grow.  Their two oldest are young adults now, both impacting the world in different ways.  Their sixteen year old daughter, Lauren, was so moved by her brother’s adoption that she longed to return to China and work in an orphanage.  And this summer, her dream will come true when she and her mom, Pam, go to Choayang, China with Visiting Orphans to minister to the little ones so desperately in need of love.

The most exciting part about this trip is that we can all be involved in helping Lauren and her team raise money to build a new playground for the children in the orphanage.  Most of the children these students will be minstering to will likely grow up in their orphanage and a new playground would be such a delight for them.

Would you consider donating to Lauren’s team?

Here are the details.  Click this link and under Gift Designation put June 22-July 3.  Under the tab Designate to a Specific Team Member, put Lauren Krosley.

Thanks everyone!  I would love to see Lauren and her team raise all the funds they need to build the orphans of Choayang a place to dream, play and be kids.

Switching gears…

A few years ago, Lee asked me to not watch Oprah anymore.  “Why?” you ask.  Well I’ll tell you.  In general, I have never been a big Oprah watcher mainly because I just don’t have time to watch TV at 4:00 in the afternoon.  But every so often I was intrigued by her previews and tuned in. 

In the span of a couple of months I watched several Oprah specials on the plight of orphans worldwide, specifically orphan girls.  I heard horror story after horror story of the sex trafficking that these young ones were subjected to and I would dial Lee up in tears, bouncing an infant Sloan on my shoulder.

“We need to adopt a little girl or five from Romania,” I sobbed once.  “You should hear what happens to those girls!”  Another time I called him blubbering about the abandoned girls in Africa and begged him to consider adopting a few children from that country…in addition to the five from Romania and three or four from Russia.  It was at that point that Lee gently suggested I quit watching shows that upset me so much.

So I did.  But the stories didn’t leave.  I’m horrified at what little girls around the world are facing.  It’s nauseating and heart wrenching and it makes me physically ill when I dwell on it.  It horrifies me that any child would go through being sold into sexual slavery, but I was especially disheartened to find out about it happening in this very country.

I’m posting a video below that I saw on Shaun Groves’ site last week.  It’s long, so if you don’t have time to watch it right now, that’s fine, but I strongly urge you to watch it later when you’ve got 30 minutes. It’s extremely well done and is gut wrenching, both visually and in subject matter.

This is a short film from Whitstone Motion Pictures called The Candy Shop.  It was made to specifically highlight the issue of sex trafficking here in the States.  You can read more about it here.


The Candy Shop from Whitestone Motion Pictures on Vimeo.


You can also visit to find out more ways you can be involved in fighting sex trafficking in young children.

Thanks for taking the time to read and learn about these organizations and ways you can make a difference in the lives of little ones worldwide.