I started this blog on May 5th. I have now been blogging for an entire season. During that time, seventeen boys I have featured on my blog have been found by their forever families (I don't take credit for that. Many people, not just me, are working hard for these boys). Seventeen lives have been redeemed, and seventeen families have been built. Even though the sad stories can sometimes be overwhelming, the fact is that, by working together, we are changing lives and changing the world. That is an encouraging thought.
My favorite quote is from The Lord of the Rings (and for you Tolkien purists, it is not spoken, as is shown in the movie, in the mines of Moria; it is spoken while Frodo and Gandalf are still in the Shire, in the chapter A Shadow of the Past). Frodo is lamenting the situation he is in, and he tells Gandalf that he wishes the ring had never come to him. Gandalf responds, in part, "All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us."
This is the quote that I keep in mind as I go about my life. This is the quote that I think of when I have a decision to make. This is the quote that helps to remind me of the type of person I want to be. Some people rely on Bible or other religious verses. Some turn to song lyrics, and others to lines from poetry. For me, my favorite quote comes from a fantasy world that is rife with struggle and where good and evil are so clearly cast. In Tolkien's world, it's so easy to see what is the right thing to do, even if it is hard to do it. In Tolkien's world, good triumphs.
In the real world, things are not always so simple. The bad guys aren't always so apparent. The correct course of action is not always so clear. I wrestle daily with the plight of these children for whom I advocate. I wonder what I should be doing. I wonder if what I am doing is enough. I wonder whether I could do more. I am faced with myriad distractions and responsibilities. I get tired and discouraged. I feel overwhelmed and overscheduled and underequipped. But I keep writing this blog because I have decided to use this time that is given to me to do what is within my power to bring attention to these children who need us.
My thoughts are never far from the boys who have no voice of their own: Jack, whose family is on its way. Denis, who has many who love him but none who have yet found him. Jason, who is hidden away so remotely that little is known about him. All the other boys whom I have featured who are still lost. All the boys, everywhere, who need someone to love them.
Parker is one of these boys. Parker is seven years old. He has such beautiful brown eyes. Parker is moderately cognitively delayed, and he has a heart condition. Just as Jack, Denis, and Jason have captured my heart, Parker has captured the heart of a passionate advocate for orphans who is reminded of her own son when she sees Parker. Leila over at Orphan Report has a special place for Parker in her heart. Very little is known about Parker, which could be why he is so frequently overlooked. Parker has only $50 in his adoption grant fund, and he does not have a Guardian Angel.
Parker needs people to speak up for him. He needs people to advocate for him, to show his face to the world in the faith that his family is out there and will know him when they see him. You can help Parker by donating to his adoption grant fund, sharing his photo and information, and considering whether Parker could be your son. You can help Denis, Jason, and any of the countless number of boys out there who are growing up without families by doing the same thing.
I know that we are all busy. I know that we all have numerous responsibilities. I know that many of us already have charitable interests that take up our time and money. I know that sometimes, the thought of doing even one more thing feels like it will be the thing that brings down the delicately balanced house of cards. But today I am asking you, my friends and readers, to share one child who has touched your heart. Share on your blog. Share on your Facebook page. Share with your religious community. Share with a friend. Share with a stranger at the grocery store. We never know where a child's family will be. It only takes a moment. And all we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.
Thanks for stopping by, and thanks for your support of orphaned boys worldwide.