Caring for Orphans… like Jean Valjean

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My wife and I recently saw the film Les Miserables, starring Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, and Anne Hathaway.I’m a sucker for a sappy story, and Les Mis fits the bill fine.

If you’ve seen the play or movie then what I’m about to say won’t surprise you, but I REALLY struggled to keep it together at the end of the film. When young Cosette receives her father’s blessing as he passes on to heaven, it was all I could do to press the STOP button on my tear ducts and gulp down the tennis ball that was in my throat.

But as I sat there musing over the message of redemption, mercy, and grace so clearly presented, I couldn’t help but think about how Jean Valjean, the story’s main character, really exemplified what it means to “Man Up.”  He took in Cosette at a young age after her mother died, cared for her, raised her, and loved her ’til the end.

How many men are willing to do that today? How many women are willing to “Man Up?”   Are we concerned with world missions like Jean Valjean was, or do we just talk a good game?   Are we really looking for ways to care for orphans or is it something we just hear at church or in the news but go about our normal routine unaffected?

This isn’t meant as a scathing rebuke, but a call to take a hard look at ourselves and the Scriptures to see what God would have us do.  We can care for orphans by sponsoring a child, going on a global missions trip (I would suggest Africa), or even adopting, like every Man Up Leadership Team Member has done or is in the process of doing. Or maybe you can just give financially to help someone else do it.

Our Les Mis hero provides a loving example of what Christ asked of us in James 1:27.

If Hugh Jackman can do it, we can too.

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