Tim Kimmel

Staff Notes: A Gift of Potential to North Korean Orphans

The following post was written by Crossing Borders volunteer staff: It seems that everywhere I turn lately, I'm running into reminders of our North Korean orphans. And it's usually in the unlikeliest of places. For example, a couple weeks ago I was reading Grace-Based Parenting by Tim Kimmel (which obviously has nothing to do with North Korea), and I came across this quote:

“There is a deep longing in the heart of every child to make a difference. They were hard-wired by God to want to do more than take up space…. That’s why tyrannical governments get so little out of their people. God didn’t create us to ignore our potential or abandon our dreams.”

Here I am, reading this book about parenting in hopes of finding some words of wisdom to help parent my two daughters, but the first thing that comes to my mind is each of the refugee children that Crossing Borders has supported over the years, and the individual dreams and potential that every North Korean orphan represents. In North Korea they would not have had a choice to pursue those dreams that God had planted in their hearts. They would be required to submit those dreams to the whims of a government that most certainly was not concerned with what was in their best interest.

But that is not the kind of God who created us. He created each of us, including every child that we serve, as individuals, with unique and purposeful longings and desires and dreams that are waiting to be fulfilled.

And then again, just this weekend, I attended a “Missional Moms” conference where it seemed God kept whispering to me, “Don’t forget about the orphans. Don’t forget about North Korea.”

One of the speakers, Shayne Moore, who wrote the book Global Soccer Mom after she was awakened from her own “suburbia stupor,” encouraged each one of us to go beyond our own small worlds and pursue the burdens that God has laid on our hearts. In her book she writes:

“I’m only one woman, who lives in one town, who goes to one church and who has one voice, but I have come to believe all our ones add up and together we can make a difference.”

At the end of her session, she told a beautiful story about meeting a little five-year old girl in Africa who had so much charisma and presence that she drew the attention of those around her simply by being who she was, and how this little African girl inspired her own fifth-grade daughter to come to the conclusion that “You’re never too small to make a difference.”

When I think about my own daughters, and when I think of each of the North Korean orphans in our Second Wave shelters, it reminds me that even they are not too small to make a difference. These are the children that will be the next generation that God is raising up, children that already say they want to grow up to be pastors and missionaries and teachers, and return to the country that their mothers and fathers fled, in hopes of bringing the good news of God’s love to a people that so desperately need to hear it. I suppose this is part of the mysterious way that God works, bringing salvation and hope, one individual, one soul at a time. To our Heavenly Father, each person matters. And no one, no child, is too small to be forgotten.