|With no money to buy diapers the baby was wrapped in a hand towel with a plastic garbage bag on top.|
Saturday, August 22, 2015
Waiting on baby #100
This week we received a little baby named Lydia. She was born 3 months premature and weighed only 1.2 KG (2.6 pounds) at birth. She is the 99th baby to have been placed at the El Roi Baby Home by the Social Welfare department of Swaziland.
The routine of picking up a child is much the same. I sit in the Social Welfare office and hear another heartbreaking story, often about rape, poverty and inevitably hopelessness that lead to the child needing to be placed in an “alternative care facility”. Reports are written, Court Orders given and the child is handed over. This week, Lydia’s story was no exception.
Receiving a new baby is a bittersweet experience. There is great joy at receiving a new life knowing that he/she will be loved, cared for and grow up to know who Jesus is and also be a contributing member of society. And as soon as that joy starts to penetrate your heart, the absolute sadness of why a baby has been abandoned by his/her parents starts to sink in.
We receive a new child on average every 12.7 days and now we wait expectantly for baby #100. There is a big part of me that hopes that phone call never comes. I hope that something changes in this tiny Kingdom, that we love and call home, so that no child is ever abandoned again. But the reality is that there will likely be baby #100 who comes to live at Project Canaan, within the next 12.7 days. Who will this child be? Will it be a boy or a girl? Will he/she be sick or healthy? What horrific set of circumstances will lead him/her to need a new home?
Like an expectant mother I sit and wait, and hope and pray for the little one who is coming to us in the days or weeks ahead. I also pray for the day that my phone doesn’t ring to pick up an abandoned baby because social change has happened and hope is restored in Swaziland.
Live from Swaziland … waiting on baby #100.