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The Least of These ©2003 -
A ministry targeting young people around the world, sharing the Love of God in Word and Deed.
My name is Stephanie Deeming and I am fifteen years old. When Kim Weynen and Rich Richmond came to our church, talking about going to orphanages in the Ukraine, everyone in my family said we should go. I don’t believe I ever had God actually call me to do something before that day. This day, He called my whole family.
The money was hard to come by, but we made it, with support from our church, both financially and spiritually, we made it. Everything we did over there was an experience to remember. The kids were great, our group was amazing and we have made some lasting friendships.
Out of all the things we did over there, my favorite day was “Salvation Day”. That was the day we told them ñ and showed them, what God did for them: about how He gave His life for all of us.
Mom said that even if only one person came to Christ, it was worth going over there. Nearly every kid who watched us came to pray with us after the show. We did a play ñ a very sad one we had discussed earlier in our planning meeting that day.
“A father was beating his son and a man happened by and asked, ‘Why are you beating
that boy?’ The father responded, ‘He is my son and I will do as I please.’ The man
pondered for a moment, ‘Well, how about I buy him from you?’ The father was interested,
‘For how much?’ ‘I have twenty grivna,’ the stranger replied. This is about four
American dollars. Meanwhile, the boy begs his father not to sell him, but the father
pays no attention to him. The father accepts the money and walks away as the son
continues to plead with his father. Scared of what has just taken place, the boy
looks at the stranger and asks, ‘What do you want from me?’ The main replied, ‘Nothing.
You are free now. You may come with me or you may find a job, or a new family -
not understand. He looks up again at the stranger and asks, ‘But why would you do that for me?’ The stranger kindly replied, ‘Because a long time ago, Jesus did the same for me.”
The kids were moved, along with all of the adults present. Even those of us Americans who did not understand much Russian, were moved to tears. We all gathered in a circle and prayed, and cried and hugged each other. A lot of our team missed dinner that evening because they were praying with the kids. Then I understood why God had called us there. We were supposed to be a part of this great miracle.
This day was also my birthday: July 3, 2004. The day I turned fifteen will remain in my heart forever because this is the day that many kids became my brothers and sisters in Christ. And what’s more, I will see them all again in Heaven, even if I never get to go back in this lifetime.
The mission trip was the most amazing thing to ever happen to me. I hope to someday go back there, to visit them and see everyone once again. When you are there, you can feel how spiritual it is. You can feel God working through you and through everyone around you. His love practically pours our to these kids, and they relish in it now ñ along with us.
If you happened to pass my letter by accident or you specifically sought it out, I’m telling you, nothing can compare to knowing you made a difference to kids who feel like the world has turned its back on them. To show them that someone does love them, more than any mortal person ever could.
Even if you can’t speak Russian, or Ukrainian, you can still make a difference. I could barely say, “da” and “Niet” (yes and no) when I went there. They may laugh at you every now and then when trying to say “Privet” (hello) or asking them to smile, but the fact that you can lead someone out of the darkness and into the light is a feeling that surpasses all.
I feel honored that God chose me and my family to go to those kids. I love them all and miss them terribly. But I do not worry; I know God will protect them and guide them with His light. This experience was truly amazing and I will never forget it.
Thank you to all those who made this trip possible. To Kim and Rich, thank you for giving us the opportunity to go. I hope my family and I will someday come back and see you all again. I love you all.
Stephanie (Steph) Deeming
|Statement of Faith|