There are times in my life where I see and feel God's direction in a real and tangible way, as if I was a child again and my mother were telling me to clean my room. I wish every day was like that, and I would wake up to God giving me a list of people to talk to, things to say, and help to respond to my kids with love and correction. Then I could just follow the list and know I am doing the right thing (hmmm….I think the Pharisees already tried that).
Back on track…….Over the past few months I have been feeling led to help fundraise for someone's adoption. Our family is in a place where I know we are not called to adopt again (at least right now), but it weighs me down when I think of all the kids needing a home. People will often say to me, "We are not called to adopt.” And I would agree, you have to have a clear calling to adopt. So what, then, are we supposed to do?
Around Christmas, I was reading my Bible and it hit me.... I'm not called to adopt, but someone is and I am going to help them! I started praying about this and mulling over what it would look like. A few words kept coming back to me, specifically RANSOMED and REDEEMED, and the name TOMMY.
In January, the 31:20 team talked about doing adoption fundraising as a project this year. However, we were not sure who to help or how to go about it, but we did feel strongly that it needed to be a family we did not know.
Then, last Thursday night at our 31:20 team meeting, we sat down to actually pick the family and child. I told the group that when I was praying about this project, I would find my self actually praying that we would be able to "redeem and ransom Tommy". We went to the Reese's Rainbow website, an organization that specializes in adoption fundraising for special needs children, and it was overwhelming to see all the kids around the world who needed love, a family, and the chance to be RANSOMED. We found a boy named Tommy, but after seeing all the others, I was not 100% sure if that was who we were supposed to help. How could I really know when there were so many in need?
Later that night, I went back to Reece's Rainbow and looked again at Tommy's profile. At the bottom of the page, it said he had been matched with a family, and you could read more about them at their blog: LovesRANSOM. I could not believe it! And if that wasn't enough, as I read the blog, I realized this precious mom was leaving the next day to go meet Tommy for the first time! I knew that this was who we were supposed to help "ransom her son.”
Grace, the adoptive mother, has already raised some money and is committed to doing what it takes to bring Tommy home. We at 31:20 want to help her, and hope you will join us! Our first plan of attack is to have 10 garage sales over the next several months with all of the money benefiting Tommy’s adoption. We already have 1 garage sale planned so far!
Here’s how you can help:
1) Host a Garage Sale.
Pick a date and we'll put it on the calendar! We'll even help supply some items to sell and help get the word out!
2) Donate Items.
Have stuff you'd like to donate toward one of the sales? You give us items, we'll give you a tax receipt! Email lindsey@thirtyonetwenty to arrange a drop-off time.
3) Get the Word Out!
Speak to churches, small groups, schools, etc to mobilize more people in the effort to Ransom Tommy. Know a group that wants to host a sale? Great! Have friends who would donate their used items to our garage sales? Incredible!
If you're not called to adopt, please consider helping some one who is! We can all help "RANSOM TOMMY."
If you want to read more about Tommy, you can go to his Reese's Rainbow link or read his Mom’s blog (she just returned from Bulgaria where she was able to meet Tommy for the first time!).
And for more info, visit The RANSOM TOMMY PROJECT page
*In case you go to the blog and notice them talking about Tony, don't worry, it is the same little boy (you can tell he has the same sweet face.) He is listed as Tommy on Reese’s Rainbow, but his name is actually Tony.