Day 1: Where Everything Begins
Media & Communications Team
4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. 5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.
I grew up singing songs like Jesus Loves Me and Deep & Wide. I attended church twice on Sunday and sat quietly in the pew dressed in my very best. (Well, I didn’t always sit quietly!) After church there was Sunday school, and when I got older, Youth Group. My brother and I memorized Bible verses, could recite the books of the Bible (both Old and New Testament) and knew all the right answers to nearly every Bible-related question. You could say that we had scripture and the commandments “tied as symbols on our hands” and “bound on our foreheads.”
So much of who we are is formed when we are young children at home. Our parents and the patterns of our youth play a big role in shaping us into the people we become. I was blessed to grow up in a loving home where the name of the Lord was praised. And all that Biblical knowledge slowly sank deep into my heart and created a deep and lasting love for Jesus and his teachings.
But not everyone experiences a story like mine. According to UNICEF, there are 153 million orphans in the world today. They don’t have parents to provide for them, a home to shelter them, or food to nourish their bodies. They don’t have Sunday school teachers to pass them peppermints and tell them Bible stories, and they certainly don’t have fancy dresses or clip-on ties to wear to church services. For kids in desperate situations, the important foundation of HOME is an uncertain, unpredictable thing.
Christ Our Hope North (the second children’s home that One Body One Hope supports) was founded in the wake of the Ebola crisis in Liberia. It was created to provide not just food and shelter and education for the kids of Lofa County, it was born out of a deep love and desire to create a family. Today, the 40 kids who called Christ Our Hope North home are learning the truth of scripture in an environment filled with tender care and abiding love. These precious kids have been given a chance to begin again.
What are some things you love about your home? What’s something unique and special about your family?
What are some ways you can support people who don’t have as firm a foundation as you do in your neighborhood? In your community? Beyond?
Share a story about an experience that shaped you as a child. How did it affect the person you became?
Father God, thank you so much for the foundation that you have given us. Our home is a special place and we thank you so much for providing for our needs and so many of our wants. Make our hearts grateful and make our hands anxious to reach out to those who are hurting. Help us to find ways to be light and life to the people around us. Give us opportunities to tell the story about who you are and how you love. We adore you. Amen.
Dig Deeper Challenge
Scripture is such a comfort, such a wonderful way for us to build a firm foundation for our lives. Pick a verse (or several verses) to be your “family verse.” Memorize it together! No matter where you go from here, you will always have this passage tucked away in your hearts.