I love a good bargain. I mean, unless it’s a gift for someone else, I weep to pay retail for things I know I can find at a garage sale. When we were growing up, I truly thought that we were poor because my Dad was ridiculously frugal. Like not ordering his own meal at restaurants because he would just finish what we didn’t eat. Like garbage-picking bikes and sports equipment and once, a couple of ancient draft horses.
You have to understand, my Dad was from a different generation. He was born at home during the Great Depression (and yes, I am 31, and no, I am not being generous with my math. The early 1930’s, people). He was the son of Polish immigrants, who called it wasteful when he saved his money to go to college, leaving a promising high school, voc-ed type apprenticeship in masonry.
As a veterinarian and later, financially-secure human physician, you just don’t get over that kind of cheap.
It has been passed on to me.
And so I must tell you the story that ticked me off to no end in church:
While Jesus was in Bethany in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, which she poured on his head as he was reclining at the table.
When the disciples saw this, they were indignant. “Why this waste?” they asked. “This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor.”
Aware of this, Jesus said to them, “Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me. When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial. Truly I tell you, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”
Because I think if we are going to LIVE frugally, we should GIVE generously to 1) Do the work Jesus called us to do and 2) improve the lives of people who suffer and can’t care for themselves.
For 31 and a half years, I have been siding with the disciples on this one. I want to help the most people and make the biggest impact because WE ARE DOING GOD’S WORK ON EARTH, and, it justifies the spending of money for things I don’t benefit from: One trip to get my nails done is 31 days of medical care and schooling for our sponsor child. See the hook? Bang for your Buck, they call it. And that is not wrong.
But sometimes, it is.
Hear me out. Sometimes, we are not called to fix the problem entirely. When Jesus said “The poor you will always have with you,” I think He was trying to encourage us and temper our expectations at the same time. We aren’t serving the poor to eradicate the problem of poverty. Though a popular soundbite among politicians, this goal is out of our reach, according to Christ. So why should we even try? Ok, the motivating part: there will never be an end to the need for what YOU can do in the name of your faith. Also, even if your action doesn’t help hundreds, it is not sinful to focus your efforts when you are called to honor God with your decision.
So what has changed?
A little boy.
He lives in Eastern Europe.
And we are going to see if we can be his parents.
Before you go jumping to conclusions about how horrible foreign countries are for allowing children to sit in orphanages, requiring tens of thousands of dollars to release them, consider this: There are very few countries who will allow their children to be adopted internationally because they know how people will talk about their way of doing things. You can thank a few Dateline specials about Romanian orphanages for shutting down adoptions there.
This Eastern European country has offered us, as American citizens, an incredible gift.
The chance to bring one of their parent-less children home.
And we have seen his face.
And so we begin.
Yes, $35,000 could save 4 orphans here in the United States, or could provide mosquito nets to 3,500 children, or pay for a year of college for 3 underprivileged teens, or meals for a month for 1000 people.
But that doesn’t reduce the cost of bringing this little boy home.
No one is going to get him out without this money.
And that is hard, because I love a bargain. And plane tickets for just one of the three trips will run us $2500 a person. And the first installment of the agency fees is more than we saved all of last year.
And we honestly just can’t afford it.
Then just like that, in a moment of divine grace, I am able to see what the woman with the alabaster jar saw. This money could make a bigger impact if we chose a different way to spend even half of it. But, we are pouring out the whole jar for this one call. To tell God, we have heard You, and we trust You, and we will answer.
When it could do so much more. When it doesn’t make sense. We are anointing this impossibly tiny child of God. Perfectly made with Down Syndrome.
Could you believe that Jesus told the disciples to remember this woman just so 2000 years later it could whisper truth in our hearts today?
So we are humbly asking you to join us on this mission. If you are moved to donate, you will be giving your own treasure for the same goal. To give what is precious for something that will have such a tiny impact. And even if you can’t, if you read these words and say “Those BLD’s are not crazy; I totally see where they’re coming from,” will you leave a kind word below to help us face the discouragement we will surely face along the way?
We are offering our precious savings, or future earnings, and most of all, a good bargain. For this child. Who soon, God willing, won’t be eligible for your charity, because he will be ours.
Due to this country’s adoption process, we have not been “matched” with him yet, and so we cannot list his picture publicly. We do know the region of Eastern Europe he is in, and are hopeful that “Thadius” will be the child we bring home. We will be able to share his photo as soon as we have been matched by the Ministry of Education after our Dossier is submitted and we make our first trip. However, anyone who donates to our Chip-in will be eligible for this awesome giveaway
Please know that if he is adopted before this, we will be matched with another child in his region. Which means we’re acting in faith, and trust that God will choose the perfect child for us.
If you would prefer a tax-deductible option (we don’t judge–we’re keeping all those receipts, too!) which will help us while we are in-country, see our Family Sponsorship Page on Reece’s Rainbow.