Weekend Message Takeaway: Close to Home

This past weekend was Orphan Weekend! In this powerful message, Pastor Doug explained why we are all looking for home, what it truly means to be home, and how we can take a stand for kids in our community.   

Watch the video below to see a few highlights from the teaching and share it with your friends via social media. To watch the message in its entirety, click here.

 

 

 


For the Note Takers

Let’s recap some of the key talking points from Pastor Doug's' teaching this weekend:

We Are All Looking for Home: For many people, good memories of home are elusive. There is no denying that every orphan’s journey begins with tragedy. For kids taken into foster care, we see these stories . . . stories of abuse, neglect, brokenness, and pain. Where do these kids go? What happens to them? What is our responsibility? Isaiah 1:17 tells us we are called to “take up the cause of the fatherless.”

It's Not That These Kids Are Unwanted . . . It's That They're Unknown: The greater the distance between “us” and “them,” the less compassion we’ll have in our hearts. In order to take up their cause, in order to be their voice, to advocate for these kids in crisis, we need to know their stories. We need to know them

What was God’s command to the people regarding the vulnerable people in need (widows and orphans)? Deuteronomy 24:19–21 says, “When you reap your harvest in your field, and forget a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back to get it; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, that the Lord your God may bless you in all the work of your hands. When you beat your olive trees, you shall not go over the boughs again; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow. When you gather the grapes of your vineyard, you shall not glean it afterward; it shall be for the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow.” This was not an act of charity . . . in God’s economy this portion belonged to the widow, the orphan, and the stranger. It was provision for them from Him (the “fields of the fatherless”). 

This is how we should look at our resources (time, talent, treasure): From all that God gives to us, a portion belongs to the widow, orphan, and stranger. If we are willing to embrace this mindset, we can make a difference . . . we can live out “pure and genuine religion” (James 1:27).

Home Is a Place to Be Fully Known and Fully Loved: Opening your heart to an orphan will expose your heart to the deep brokenness of the world. Joy and heartache will follow. But here’s the thing . . .Broken children teach us compassion and humility; they stretch our spiritual understanding from head to heart. 

Walking the road of redemption with a child is long and messy. Sometimes, it feels thankless. Often these children come empty; they don’t trust love nor have they ever truly experienced it. And while yes, opening your home to an orphan may be the hardest thing you will ever do, we believe it is also the greatest thing you will ever do!

God's Provision for an Orphan May Be Your Home: Many will likely ask themselves, “How could one person make a difference?” This is the wrong question. What we should be asking is, “How will God use one to chase a thousand?” We know He can do the impossible, we know He can restore what’s broken, redeem what’s irredeemable, and bring to life that which is dead. And we know He can use every one of us to impact the individual lives of hurting children all the while making change in grand scale ways we may never even fully comprehend.

How can God use you? 
1. Open your home.
2. Join the movement.
3. Give.  

Quote to Remember: You never outgrow your need for a family!—Pastor Doug Sauder


KIDS ARE IN CRISIS CLOSE TO HOME

Every day, 7 to 11 kids are being removed from their homes across our community. You may not know their names or see their faces but their crisis is close to home. Your advocacy can change their lives.

Here’s how you can take a stand and keep kids close to home.

1. Use the interactive removal map below by entering your zip code to see the latest number of kids who have been removed from your zip code.

2. Take the number of kids who were removed from your zip code and write that number on your palm and take a selfie.

3. Share that photo on social media using the #CloseToHome4KIDS and challenge your friends to do the same.

4. Give your best gift to end the crisis for kids in our community.

Your first gift to 4KIDS is doubled up to $250,000 thanks to a generous friend of 4KIDS.


YOUR GIFT CHANGES LIVES

Your gift will directly impact the lives of children and teens in crisis. Your support provides emergency care when children are first removed from their homes, loving foster families that give kids a place to belong, guidance and support for young moms facing unplanned pregnancies, and an encouraging community for young adults who have aged out of foster care.

Right now, your first gift to 4KIDS will be doubled up to $250,000 thanks to a generous friend of 4KIDS.

Thank you for believing every child deserves to experience hope and healing. Click here to give.


A LOOK AHEAD

On Wednesday, Pastor Doug will give an update on Vision 2023 and let us know about some of the things we can look forward to in the coming months. 

Join us this Memorial Day weekend as we kick off our highly anticipated study through the Book of Genesis “Origins: The Beginning.” Come along with us as we discover how it all started. Together, we’ll gain a deeper understanding of who God is, who we are, how things went wrong, and how He’s been laying the foundation for salvation since the very beginning. In this first message, Pastor Doug will teach from Genesis 1:1–25. We’ll also be honoring our dedicated public servants during service!