Servants' News

Jan/Feb 2000


Teaching Orphan Boys at the Harbor Home in La Porte, Texas


Do you remember Neil Diamond’s song, “Turn on your Love Light”? Some of the words were running through my mind this weekend when I saw the Harbor Lights. If you are from the pre-baby boomer generation I am sure you will remember Patti Page’s rendition of that.

What I am reporting on is the first Bible study with the young 7 to 12 year old boys who are orphans at the Harbor Home in La Porte, Texas. We are using Christian Educational Ministries Youth Educational Adventures (YEA) book for primary age children. We had them coloring while I read them the real story about the birth of Christ.

But what I first started out with was something that most boys are interested in: “Space Travel”. I handed out a small rubber ball that had the continents on it. The ball represents the earth, and they were given to me by the Boeing public relations people. I told them that I was doing a workshop with orphan boys at the Harbor. I further mentioned that I was using the principles in the Bible (to let them know that I am a Christian that is concerned for the unfortunate) to teach them how to prepare their lives to work at a place like Boeing. The Public Relations person loved that idea and gave me some other things to take to the Harbor (which I will pass out at another time). I asked them if I could borrow a 5 minute promotional tape about the first anniversary of the space station. The boys loved the tape and said things like “wow”, and “that is cool”. The tape’s theme was a new star in the sky. That was very easy for me to relate to God’s Creation in the sky.

I reinforced the YEA lesson with the book on Values from the UCG-IA, written by Larry Greider. I read the lesson on compassion. I think the adult sponsors who were there were impressed with the way my wife and I made the boys feel that they were important to us and very important to God. I won’t go into a lot of detail at this time, but let me say that the hugs the boys gave us were very uplifting to my wife, Debbie, and I. We ask for your prayers in our efforts to show these boys about how God loves them. Our goal is to try to emphasize the personality of God with each lesson, and how they can get to walk with Him and think like Him. As God’s Spirit moves us in this effort, we will continue to write about it so that you can see what it is like being active in preaching and acting out God’s Way of Life with the Matthew 25 and James 1 people. An exciting aspect of this is that we try to employ God’s Spirit as God leads us. It is apparent that we can’t fool these children with phony sentiment or preaching down to them. So, when they warm up to us, it is because God is making our words genuine with His Wisdom regarding how to reach these children about Him. They don’t always appreciate everything we say, but they can sense our desire to help them. We do tell them we want them to be successful in life as God wants them to be. It is this way of bringing God’s knowledge to them that we think they respect us for.

It only took an hour of talking and laughing with the little boys and perhaps an hour of driving, but we felt it was two hours of Sabbath time that was very rewarding. We plan to do it twice a month to start. Who knows how many will show up from the other cottages, but those young boys in the cottage we were in are yearning for love and attention. I think it is time for more of God’s people to start ‘Turning up their love light”. This is a true sensation that “feels so right”. Hope more on the Forum can share your love light with little ones like this. At the Harbor we saw their eyes light up with the truth of how God really loves them. I love to practice what we will be doing in the Kingdom.

—Rich Schulz


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