Friday, November 12, 2010

Profile of a Winner

I wanted to introduce you all to the winner of our Mission Trip Giveaway, Anna Cardiel. Anna is a school bus driver in Tehachapi, California. She has been on 3 Visiting Orphans trips to China over the past years. She raised every cent of each trip through fundraising. Except this year she was unable.

This year she was not even able to afford to purchase the Pure Religion t-shirt so her mother purchased it just so she could be entered into the mission trip giveaway drawing!

On Anna's first trip to Chaoyang, China in 2007, she was changed immensely. Anna had never been around special needs children and honestly in her words, "was a little afraid of them". She met this little toddler baby boy named Fu Jain who had microcephalus, which is the condition when a child's head is abnormally smaller than the rest of his body. The nannies at this SWI neglected this baby boy and he was never held and had never been out of his crib. Anna said that she truly felt the love of a mother for this baby boy and took him out of his crib for the first time and outside for the first time. She said her heart broke when she had to come back to the states and leave him and insisted that the nannies take him out of his crib and outside from now on.

She returned the next year to find him WALKING! The nannies had learned by Anna's example and had loved him now. The next year Anna was unable to return to visit with Fu Jain due to the swine flu, although she was determined to go on missions to China and went to Heng Feng, China instead.

This year though, she just did not see how it could be possible that she could return. She felt she had asked too many times for funds and her faith was just lacking. So, her precious mom believed for her and purchased her t-shirt just so she could be entered into the drawing and she WON! In fact, yesterday was Fu Jain's 5 year old birthday!!! The day she won this trip to see him again!!!!

Here is Anna's response to the announcement that she won:
So UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!! Hi I'm Anna Cardiel The winner of the Visiting
Orphans mission trip contest..YAY!!! I went to Chaoyang China 2007 on
my first mission trip never knowing what condition the orphans would be
in, special needs is not something I though I could handle. Because we
server such an awesome God Christ Jesus my heart became His and I fell
in love with the Children especially a little one, Jain. I could never
afford a trip so I did a fund raiser for that year and the next two
years. I was unable to go in 2010 due to my own finances and that was
such a heartbreak. Then this year Visiting Orphans comes up with this
contest (which NEVER in a million years did I think I would win) and at
the very last minute I entered the contest, which my mom paid for the
t-shirt, and here I sit writing a winners testimony!!!!!!!! THANK YOU
CHRIST JESUS!!!!!!! Oh thank you too Visiting Orphans for your small
part hee hee

Won't you be an Anna to an orphan this Summer?! You can join Anna in Chaoyang in 2011 by applying here!

You can see a photo of Anna here with her beloved Fu Jain in the SWI (social welfare institute, what China calls an orphanage) in Chaoyang.

And the Winner Is?!

Watch this video to find out who won our amazing Visiting Orphans Mission Trip drawing:

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Orphan Sunday Tomorrow

In honor of Orphan Sunday tomorrow, November 6th, please watch this video. It is why I fell in love with sending missions to orphans. It was the child after child in an orphanage that I met and fell in love with, only to have to leave behind due to governmental systems that are not "for" them or due to the fact that no family was stepping up to adopt them. I still remember the time I was at the Mother Theresa HIV orphanage in Addis and a little 4 year old boy was pushed into a gutter and split his head open. This time someone was there to pick him up and console him....that was me. But every other day, no one cared. No one came to rescue him. No one came to love him. No one came just to hold him when he fell....

Hope is Fading – Orphan Sunday from Allan Rosenow on Vimeo.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

The Ripple Effect..

Here's an awesome example of why I love what I do! Not only is it the millions of orphans who need us to come meet and love them, but it's TWO fold! It's the people who go on these trips to visit orphans who are changed forever. I fondly call it the Ripple Effect.

Mary Beth Lavin joined me on the first mission trip I ever led for VO in 2006! It was VO's first time sending a team to Ethiopia. From that trip, God ignited Mary Beth's heart (and obviously mine!) with a passion and she returned home with a another term I am fond of, a "holy frustration". A frustration from that she would wrestle with until a year and a half ago when God's purpose for her life was made clear. Please watch this video to see how Mary Beth's not for profit, Formula One Life is saving orphaned babies lives all over the world!

You'll want to fast forward to about the 4th minute into the video...

Real Conversations - Formula One Life - RC04 from Real Conversations on Vimeo.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Why Do I Do What I Do

There are many days that I feel judged. Many days that I feel disliked. Many days that I feel misunderstood. Many days that I feel resisted. I know what's in my heart, but others don't. God does.

People may judge me and think that I am just trying to "grow" a company. They may think that it's all about me or Visiting Orphans. In fact at the end of the day I feel like there are many who truly are more against me than for me. And that makes me sad. I am not a woman made of armor. I am made of flesh and blood and words and judgements hurt.

What I do know is this. I know there are more than 143 million orphans in this world. I know that there are probably a lot less of God's people doing what James 1:27 tells them to visit orphans in distress than this 143 million number. So, I have this burn...not just in my heart, but in my GUT! It's what I call a Heart Cry. It comes from the belly and wells up and compels me. My heart's cry is to see every orphan visited. Yes, I wish that every orphan could be adopted into a forever family and yes, I wish at the end of the day that there were no more orphans! But the reality is that there has been since the Old Testament times and most likely will be until Christ returns. So, what's my place, my lot, my purpose for this life I live until He returns?! My personal mission is to bring the hope of Christ to every orphan. For them to know that God sees them. That they are not forgotten. To find them in their hidden places. That they are found, adopted by their Abba Father and have a royal inheritance. To know that I personally do love them. That God has downloaded a love for them that is so strong that I can't possibly do anything else!

So when you see me "marketing" and campaigning some more for Visiting Orphans and our mission trips, it's this heart cry that fuels me. It may not be your heart cry and you may do thing differently, but this is all for God's glory. That's why we are here on earth to bring Him glory. May Visiting Orphans bring Him glory by increasing as the number of people choosing to GO and visit orphans in distress increases and the number of orphans not visited DECREASES.

Our Mission Trip Giveaway!

We have an exciting opportunity for you that we can't wait to share with you! The details are in this video!

Visiting Orphans Mission Trip Giveaway from Amanda Lawrence on Vimeo.