Welcome to the 16th and final post in the Renew your mind (Romans 12:2) series.
I wrote the series because I needed (and based on reader’s comments, I’m not alone) to remind us of certain truths. I pray this encourages you.
I told myself I wasn’t going to cry. But tears streamed down my cheeks. Why?
I saw a love not of this world because it couldn’t be earned or repaid. An unconditional love based on Jesus Christ’s example.
“We love because He [God] first loved us.” – 1 John 4:19
Because I saw 60 year old Pastor Lee and his wife feed, wash and shelter abandoned babies, my heart broke at the staggering beauty of their loving sacrifice. Most of these babies were disabled and needed extra time and attention to care.
Instead of seeing these children as a burden, Pastor Lee wholeheartedly believed in the purpose and value of each child.
Love sees what others cannot see.
He said people, who saw the children, began to reflect on their lives and how they were living.
For example, 21 year old film student, Brian Ivie, came to film Pastor Lee and the kids after reading about the “baby box” in the Los Angeles Times. Seeing Pastor Lee and other Christians love these children changed Brian’s view of God’s unconditional love.
Brian could relate to the children because he recognized his brokenness was on the inside.
Photo used with permission of: Josh
Because of the huge stigma and shame associated with having a baby, outside of marriage and/or a disabled child, many young teens and women abandon their babies on the cold streets of Seoul, Korea.
After discovering a baby left on his church’s doorstep one frigid evening, Pastor Lee decided he couldn’t stand by and watch babies continue to die on the streets.
He researched and built a box into a wall of his home where women could ring a bell and drop their babies off in anonymity. When the bell rings, usually at night, Pastor Lee awakens and rushes downstairs to save a baby.
Sometimes a note accompanies a baby. Once a baby was left still covered in its birth blood.
Sprinkled throughout the film, we see smiling faces and happy children despite their challenges. They know they’re loved.
10 year old Ruri was born missing some fingers and toes but it hasn’t kept him from loving and learning Taekwando.
I loved how the documentary first introduced us to Ruri as an incredibly articulate and wise tween before revealing his physical condition.
Photo used with permission of: Vinoth Chandar
I enjoyed how the film alternated between stories of the children and how Pastor Lee and his wife met. One surprise: the baby box initiated controversy and needed public discussion of a dark secret: the abandonment of babies on Seoul’s streets.
The film also showed this problem was worldwide.
Pastor Lee and his wife live out Jesus’ teaching to be salt and light; their example challenges me. The church is called to be salt and light. Based on our situation, gifts and temperament, we live it out in different ways.
“These [children] are not the unnecessary ones. God sent them here for a purpose.”-Pastor Lee
Are we seeking Jesus on how we can care for orphans and the most vulnerable among us?
Photo used with permission of: Maria Gomez
Many years ago, I volunteered at a home for children and teens with cerebral palsy. The staff and volunteers humbled me by their loving care with difficult tasks, such as cleaning and assisting with basic bodily needs. I spent time with Speedy as he showed me how he played the piano with one hand’s bent fingers. Amazing.
Likewise as I watched Pastor Lee and his wife feed a disabled child, which can take up to an hour or more, I saw a love born out of their deep love for Christ.
The film showed volunteers folding mounds of laundry and feeding children. Pastor Lee and his wife can’t do it alone although they carry most of the burden. In particular, no one has stepped up to give up sleep to answer the bell when a baby is dropped off in the middle of the night.
For those not called to adopt, we can give our time, prayers, and/or resources, such as sharing a meal or donating. This is how my husband and I help but we’re asking God and ourselves: Is there more? We don’t know.
God gifted each of us differently and God uniquely prepared Pastor Lee. His 26 year old son, Eun-man was born with a huge growth on his left cheek. Today his son still needs complete care but he is not vegetative as the doctors predicted. He can smile.
After asking God, “Why?” Pastor Lee said he repented and thanked God for his son. His son gave him a heart for children with disabilities.
Can you see why I couldn’t help but cry? Pastor Lee models a tender compassionate heart, like Jesus.
Please join me in praying for Pastor Lee, the children, and also for the parents. I can’t imagine how hard it was for these moms to leave their children.
Pastor Lee didn’t begin this ministry when his son Eun-Man was first born and they lived at the hospital for several years to care for him.
We can’t do it all but we’re called to do something…either now or in the future.
Soul Stops Reflections:
Has anyone ever modeled “not of this world kind of love” to you?
I haven’t shared all of the film’s stories, but if you want to learn more, check out http://www.thedropboxfilm.com/.
If you’d like to donate to the Global Orphan Care Fund, donate here. Funds will support Pastor Lee’s work and Focus on the Family’s domestic orphan initiatives.
Or you can sponsor a child through Compassion International, or World Vision, or Potter’s House International.
Pray for orphans and ask God what you can do. I know some of my readers are prayer warriors who make a difference.
Linking with encouraging Kelly B. of #RaRaLinkup and Kelly of#SmallWonder and Lyli of Thought Provoking Thursdays…and her post on a teachable spirit paired well with an earlier post on my unexpected lesson at a gas station.
And also linking with wise Holley