Jesus declared Himself to be “the light of the world” (John 8:12). And He declared that his disciples “are the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14). In a world that is getting increasingly darker, Christians have the opportunity to shine brighter than ever. That is precisely what the Georgia Baptist Children’s Home is doing.
Statistics show that there are more than 100,000 children and youth in the United States in need of permanent adoptive families. Parents often forfeit the right to care for their biological children because of abuse, abandonment, and neglect; and in some cases the parents are simply unable to care for their children.
When the court has determined that a child cannot safely live with their birth family, the search begins to find a suitable home for that child. Children sometimes are placed on a waiting list and wonder if someone will come to deliver them out of the darkness of their pitiable condition.
In that darkness the Georgia Baptist Children’s Homes and Family Ministries (GBCH&FM) shines with remarkable warmth and love. In 2017 the agency helped 1,215 children and their families find a glimmer of hope through their ministries. Thankfully, Georgia Baptists have an effective means of providing for the physical and emotional well being of children, but also for their spiritual well being.
For 146 years this Christian caring ministry has been a beacon of light for thousands of children and youth. Today their expansive ministries provide help and hope to young teen mothers, victims of human trafficking, and individuals coping with developmental disabilities. The agency’s community counseling centers also provide direction to families seeking guidance and understanding.
Imagine yourself as a child running away from home because of an abusive father and a mother hooked on drugs. Your circumstances have been intolerable and are getting worse by the day. You escape the abuse and neglect, but you are a child and have no means of providing for yourself and no one to call for help.
You are afraid to go home and you have to scavenge in dumpsters for scraps of food. You are wearing the only clothes you possess. You have no one to care for you when you are sick. You live on the streets of Atlanta. You are subject to becoming a victim of human trafficking yourself, because one out of every three children living on the streets will become prey to that industry within 48 hours of running away from home.
Can you even imagine living in that kind of darkness? But into that darkness comes the light of the Baptist Children’s Homes and Family Ministry. Wouldn’t you want to invest in that ministry? You can do so this Mother’s Day in Baptist Churches all across Georgia.