Wednesday, May 18, 2011


My husband asked me if he could write something to post on my blog regarding our experience at the Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit VII in Louisville, KY.  These are his words:


The Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit was a very moving and rejuvenating experience. It renewed my spirit; it opened my eyes to the plight of the orphan, to the importance of my marriage, and to the work God is calling me. There were great speakers and great worship moments, ones where you knew the Holy Spirit was at work in you and moving the cause forward.  The final night’s speaker was the teaching pastor at Southeast Christian Church, Kyle Idleman. He spoke on the three “C’s” that all Christians must truly understand to be followers and not just fans (from his new book “Not a Fan” see link The three C’s are Control, Comfort, and Convenience. These are three things that as followers of Christ we cannot expect to have when we follow His will. In the moment of his speaking, I was doing the typical Christian response with a nice steady head nod and a muffled amen to show my agreement. The problem was that ultimately it was all head knowledge, not heart and soul knowledge. Little did I know how quickly this would change!
    As we started our twelve hour car ride home, from the summit in Louisville, Kentucky, my mind was working overtime, excited about all the knowledge I had gained. I had thought that after the conference I would get some time to recuperate and let all the great wisdom settle in. God had other plans and wanted to continue my learning curve with some firsthand experiences. As we drove through the heart of Indianapolis our car overheated and left us unable to start it. A few moments after the smoke had settled and we were sure our car was far enough off the interstate so that a Mack truck wouldn’t come barreling down on us, my wife and I looked at each other with the “what do we do now?” look. It was at this moment I felt the honeymoon phase of the summit slipping away. The real world and all its problems came flooding back into our lives on the side of that road in Indianapolis.
    This is where the lesson begins.  No sooner had the car stopped working, when the realization that we needed help started to cross our minds. We needed people who we could count on, those that had been there for us before and had come through time and time again. We needed our families!  Even at the adult ages of 29 and 30 (I am 29 if you were wondering) we need our parents and families. My wife started calling her dad for help and I called my dad for help. Asking for guidance, reassurance, and the “what do we do now?” questions. In the course of this 6 hour delay that included a tow to a local auto shop, a new crank sensor (I don’t know either, but it is needed!), and a bill that could have bought me an itouch, I felt the impact of the three C’s. All my control was taken away because I could not fix the car myself, my comfort relying on our vehicle was gone and getting home around supper time changed to around 1am, making our long day even longer, and the inconvenience of having to sit in an auto shop waiting room for six hours, not knowing if we would have to junk the car, rent a car, or buy a new one all came crashing down on me. Through it all, the Lord was faithful and he did get us home safely in the same car. It wasn’t until driving through Chicago when the lesson he was teaching me sunk in.  

I am a grown man; I have an amazing partner in my wife. I have parents who were willing to drive from 3 states away to get us if needed. I had a brother in law and sister who live by Chicago who were willing to drive down and pick us up if needed. You see I have a family. I have a family and when the chips are down, families rise to the occasion, to protect each other, to care for each other, that is what family does. Do you see the point; do you see the importance of this reality? What if I were an orphan, a foster child who had aged out of the system at 18 years old and was stranded on the side of that American interstate? What would I do? Who would I call? And the reality is that we have too many orphans "sitting on the side of that interstate" in places of distress wondering who to call. I believe that God expresses his love for the orphans and the oppressed. I believe he talks about the orphan to Israel in the bible over 40 times because they don’t have control over their circumstances, they can’t find comfort in families, and they don’t have the convenience of support and resource of others.  
If we want to be like Christ then we, the church, must recognize our status as orphans who have been adopted in to the family of God. As we reflect on the amazing reality that God adopted us in to His family when we had nothing to offer Him, we can't deny the power of what adoption does for a person.  Our hearts should be grieved over the children living without the earthly family that they so desperately desire.  When our hearts break in the same way that God’s does, I believe it will bring us closer to being followers, not merely "fans", of Christ. And ultimately I think it will help us…help orphans.


  1. Wow, Mac, thanks for sharing! Great stuff! Opens my eyes even more!

  2. This is really neat, thanks for sharing more in depth.