We were in a bit of a rush trying to get off for a trip, but we were making sure our story about "The Community" was recorded on video. Donna shared her heart about the precious girls of Casa Susanna and our experience with them on our trip to Peru. Then her voice broke and huge tears began to roll down her cheeks as she talked about Gladys, an absolutely precious nine-year-old girl who had spent the past eight years at "The Community" after her mother died in childbirth.

Donna said, "Gladys wanted a mother. Gladys wanted me to be her mother. I wanted to be her mother. But it was not to be."

My heart stopped as my tears flowed and I remembered my last hug of this precious girl. I had not known about this last conversation Donna had with Gladys until now. I only knew that if money could have solved this problem, Donna would have already sold everything we had to bring Gladys and Araceli back to our home. She said to me, "I want them to sleep in our beds and eat at our table and I want to tuck them into bed and kiss them good night every night. I want them to know they are loved and they are safe and they are part of our family."

Jesus' brother, James, wrote the following:

Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you (James 1:27 NLT).

What I saw glistening in the corners of my wife's eyes and running down her cheeks was "pure"! While we couldn't adopt these precious girls — trust me, Donna did some checking into it — we knew we had to go back to Peru to remind them that they were not forgotten, that Jesus loves them, and that we would come back to them. So we are already packing and planning for this next summer — to host some, to go some, and to love a lot.

If there was anything we learned this summer, it was simply this: our family is bigger than those who sleep in our house, eat at our table, and share our genetics. With precious foster grandsons in Kentucky, students in China and Thailand, and little girls in Peru, our hearts were stretched as far as they could go without bursting. I don't know how you can love and laugh and cry so much, yet still have so much more love to give. I believe it must be the miracle of God's grace as the Holy Spirit keeps pouring love into our heart (Romans 5:5).

It is "pure"! Pure love, pure grace, pure God.

Over this past year, God has rocked my world, enlarged my family, and opened my heart in ways I could never have imagined. In the process, God's great blessings have flowed back in to my life in ways that I could have never dreamed, just as he promised (Ephesians 3:20-21).

It is "pure"!

This week I am sharing the story of La Comunidad de Los Niños Sagrada Familia on my blog — we are not having as many Heartlight.org articles as a result. I hope you will join me on my blog and read more about this precious trip.

Even more, I hope you will prayerfully consider giving a one-time gift or sponsoring one of these precious children — one among more than 800 children orphaned for one reason or another. All the money goes to the food fund to help these children. (For more on the impact of your gift, please watch the video below!)

You get a t-shirt, a picture, and the satisfaction of knowing that you are helping feed a precious child that is in a safe place where he or she is learning about Jesus, getting a good education, and is protected from the harsh life of the streets. You can sponsor online by going to:


What I saw running down her cheeks was "pure"!

download the form & mail it in: http://bit.ly/HL-cfqaax

At Heartlight, we are committed to provide you resources to live for Jesus in today's world. One of those resources is a way to share how the Lord has blessed you. I hope you will consider this resource as an opportunity for you to experience something sweet, blessed, and pure!

Please come take a look at my blog: http://www.heartlight.org/thephilfiles/sagradafamilia and find a way to make a difference in the lives of precious children.

Video on how your gift makes a huge difference!