Faith in Deeds

Hands of Hope Blog

I was flipping through the pages of a popular magazine a few days ago, when I came across something that caught my eye. It was a simple question posed in bold black lettering:

“If you could change one decision you made in the past, what would it be?”

“Seriously? Just one decision?” I thought. “Let me tell you, there are a million things I would ask for a do-over with. Let’s see, there was the time that…”

But each time I tried to add an embarrassing or painful memory to my list, all I could think was, “yeah, but if that hadn’t happened then you wouldn’t have been able to do this,” or “if you hadn’t gone through that then you wouldn’t have met this person.”

After having memory after memory shot down, I decided it might be best for me to forego the list, at least for a little while, but as the hours passed, I still couldn’t seem to shake the question. It was like a rain cloud looming overhead; obviously ready to downpour, but withholding its water for some reason. I couldn’t help but feel as though this were no ordinary question; I wouldn’t feel so uneasy about it if it were. So I did the only thing I knew to do, I prayed.

“Simple” was the response that I received.

At first, the word didn’t make sense. But suddenly, the word “simple”, became anything but. I was reminded of how Faith in Deeds ministry came to be; how one single, seemingly negative decision grew into a destiny.

After enduring endless struggles to provide enough food to feed their family, Thomas Ravi Mollhagen’s parents made the difficult decision to turn he and his brother, Peter, over to a private orphanage in India. Unfortunately, shortly after their placement, the private orphanage lost its license and the boys were placed within the state’s orphanage system. Throughout the next four years they were moved from institution to institution; treated as numbers rather than children. Feeling as though he could no longer tolerate the situation, Thomas made up his mind to run away and start a new life, but God had other plans. In less than a year, he and his brother were adopted by Betty Mollhagen of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

In 2005, while praying for guidance, God stepped in once again. Thomas had grown confident in the fact that he was meant to help those in need, but when it came to deciding upon the right location in which to do so, he needed a bit of a nudge. He earnestly promised God that he would go wherever He chose to direct his steps. As Thomas opened his eyes, he immediately knew God’s answer. Staring him in the face was a giant sign stating: “Pray for India.”

Thomas returned to India and began his journey. He began re-visiting some of the places he had gone as a child and witnessed more children in need; children experiencing the same feelings of hunger, sadness and desperation that he himself had experienced as a child. He knew something had to be done, but what?

Blog to be continued on Thursday, August 2, 2012.