By Tim & Theresa Oloffson
Many prayers and preparations went into the six months leading up to the 2008 camp for the children at the orphanage in Zau deCampie, Romania. Just before the kids arrived, my heart felt anxious.
This feeling was different from any feeling I had before. This was my third trip to visit these children from the orphanage nick-named the “Castle.” Our team of 13 planned to deepen the relationships we had already started to harvest with these children. My concern, though, was that they wouldn’t remember the experiences we had last year. What if the previous year’s camp had little or no impact on their lives?
These thoughts haunted me before we arrived. But, then my mind switched to how the kids were feeling as they pulled into the camp. Whose hearts were more scared of being forgotten by someone they had learned to love and trust just a year ago? The answer seems obvious to me now.
I am sure the lonely and wounded hearts of these orphaned children have much more fear of being forgotten than me. As the children got off of the bus, I could tell from the reaction of Noemy, a girl I had befriended with the previous year, that they were more afraid of being forgotten than me. As our eyes met and she sensed my excitement to see her again, I could tell she was relieved. As we shared a big hug and I whispered into her ear, “I missed you,” I could sense the relationship deepen and her heart less anxious.
I have much to learn on how and why these children who have been forgotten by their loved ones react towards a stranger who wants to share the love of Christ with them. As I continue to work with these children, I pray God provides me with wisdom to understand their complicated and troubled hearts.
I also need to understand that my heart shouldn’t be anxious because my Lord is with me at all times and with his strength he provides everything I need.
Tim and Theresa Oloffson are the founders of the ministry “Go Ye Therefore…” and have traveled to Romania several times through Buckner. Learn more about their ministry at http://www.gothereforeorphanministry.org.
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