Thursday, June 27, 2013

Belwop: No one's story but His

This story compels my heart. It compels me because I spy Jesus in it. It has His unmistakable fingerprints all over it. I don't sense that about every good thing I see good people doing in the world. I just don't. But this story...these hearts...they belong to Him. And their faith is moving mountains.

This is not a story about awesome people doing awesome things.

It's not a story about Americans helping the underprivileged.

It's not a story about Africa.

It's not a story that is supposed to inspire pity for orphans or make you ponder the economic state of the third world.

It's a story about the gospel.

Don't skip over it too quickly: The Belwop Project is a living testament of the gospel, the good news that Jesus came with an unrelenting love to pursue us and save us and restore us.

That's why this story is the same as my story. And yours (if you know Him). The place and time don't really matter, except in that these children, at the heart of the story, have far, far fewer distractions to get in the way of embracing Jesus' love. I can't say for certain that my children are as happy as these kids are. Really, I don't know if they are.

Please watch the video below to see this story unfold.

Watch how God is an absolute master at connecting dots, at organizing and raising up His people to do His work. You will be so encouraged. You will get to know Him a little better, see His heart, His intense mercy and compassion.

You'll also see our friends Kate and Aaron Johnson sprinkled throughout. Here's Kate below, on the top right. (And just LOOK at that sweet one's silly face below her!)

I had the privilege of serving at the same church with she and her husband back in California. As Kate says, The Belwop Project is just a small bunch of people stepping out in faith to share the love of Jesus. It's quite simple.

Please watch this. Because also, I'm so anxious for you to meet Veronica, the one in the middle of the photo, the mother to the 27 children who live at the Belwop home. She has laid down her life. She is the real deal.

Hope Has A Home from Belwop Project on Vimeo.
It's the long version, I know. But it's sooooo good. In the video, I recognized a sacred childishness in these kids. Because they live at Belwop, that spirit is being preserved and celebrated instead of shattered by pain and abandonment. I could see thriving ambition in one girl, ringing of the same I see in my daughter. And the little boy dancing towards the end is just like my son, who finds it the most entertaining thing on earth to shake his booty side to side. Knowing the types of things these children have been through tells me that they are being healed by Love. (If you absolutely can't watch it after the kids go to bed or sometime this weekend, here is a link to the 4 minute version.) 

This August, Kate is taking a team to Kenya for a visit. My kids and I are going to send something along with her for the kids. 23 are girls, so we'll be making flower headbands. Maybe you make something that would bless them too. 4 are boys. And so far, I'm at a loss as to what to send for the boys. Any ideas?

We also want to do a Lemonmade stand. This small effort helps the kids in this community in a very specific and very urgent way (read more here). I bet you already put "Have a lemonade stand" on your summer list. Maybe you could have one that benefits the Belwop community, and talk to your kids about how blessed they are to be able to go to school.

You can also follow The Belwop Project on Instagram now at @belwopproject. I was holding back tears reading about the newest handful of boys to join the family. To be more accurate, I was holding back tears reading about WHY they needed Belwop to be their home.

I just wonder which dots God plans to connect next. I wonder to what extent He wants to use my family, in light of our time, talents and treasure. I wonder if He wants to use your family too to extend a hand to Belwop.

This calls for prayer, friends. And surrender. And a letting go of my jaded-ness. And my pride. And my clingy attitude regarding my resources. Because this is His story. And I want to be a part of it.

Because whether you're a homemaker in Montana (me!) or an orphan in Kenya, the gospel of Jesus is all we've got.



  1. This is beautiful! Thank you!

  2. Wow. Thank you so much. This post is absolutely amazing!! Thank you for carrying on the heart of belwop. It does not go unnoticed! James 1:27.

  3. I was sooo encouraged. Getting to see God work is just amazing! Thank you for sharing.