And God is still moving on behalf of these kids! Once I realized that God was not calling me to stay in Ukraine, I began praying that He would send someone else to continue the work He had started. I know that many of you have prayed for the same thing. Well, God is answering our prayers!
I would like you to ‘meet’ Natalie…
Natalie is a 20-year-old college student who is taking a semester off to volunteer with orphans in Ukraine. I can relate so much to Natalie’s story… She first discovered Reece’s Rainbow about a year and a half ago and immediately fell in love with the sweet faces she saw there. She had a deep desire to help these kids and, being that she is unable to adopt at this time, she knew that God was calling her to love on the kids still in the orphanages. Here is it where it gets really exciting (for me at least)… Back in May, Natalie saw Denis’ picture for the first time which eventually led her to my blog. In reading through my experiences in Ukraine, she fell in love with “my” kids and felt a strong calling from God that this was where she supposed to go and these were the kids she was supposed to love. As I type this, Natalie is on a plane slowly making her way to Ukraine. Seriously, just the thought of it all gives me goose bumps… How great God is! This has been a part of His plan the whole time and I love seeing His fingerprints all over it… Natalie first discovered Reece’s Rainbow and had her eyes opened to the plight of special needs orphans in Eastern Europe at the same time that God was providing the connections necessary for me to go to Ukraine; He was already preparing the heart of the person He would send to continue His work in that place before I even arrived!
This is Natalie’s first mission’s trip and she is taking a huge step of faith. Her heart is for “my angels” at the baby orphanage (a.k.a. orphanage “14” on Reece’s Rainbow) yet she has already been warned that the director may not let her in. This whole time she has felt called to be at baby orphanage with younger kids and she is trusting God to get her in if that is His will. In addition, she is also hoping to be able to spend some time with the abandoned babies at the children’s hospital as well as at the special needs orphanage (a.k.a. orphanage “7” on Reece’s Rainbow) and the preschool orphanage that Igor & Dima were transferred to (a.k.a. orphanage “63” on Reece’s Rainbow). I am ‘introducing’ Natalie to you because I know that most of the people reading my blog have fallen in love with “my” kids as well and I imagine that many of you will be just as excited about all this as I am. Also, I know that Natalie is going to need our prayers. I know firsthand how difficult it was trying to get into all of those places and just how much patience and perseverance it took. I also believe that I never would have made it in if it were not for the prayers of so many of you. So, now I’m asking you to join me in praying for Natalie. Pray that God would move the mountains and open the doors for her to get into the baby orphanage as well as the other three facilities, if that is His will. And pray that He would draw her close to Him and give her all the strength and endurance she needs to do everything He is calling her to do.