Sometimes the simplest stories make the greatest impact on others. This story is about how God answered the prayer of a woman struggling with fear. It is a testament to how God can transform what is rejected by the world, to instead see beauty through eyes filled with His love and mercy. Enjoy!
It happened when the United States was pulling out of Vietnam. Operation Babylift, ordered by then-President Gerald Ford, was an effort to save as many orphaned Vietnamese children as possible before South Vietnam was taken over by the North. At least 2,700 children were flown to the US (and another 1,300 were flown to Canada, Europe and Australia) to be adopted by families eager to receive them. One couple, Ken and Miji Working, living near a military base on the West Coast of the US, had previously adopted special needs kids from overseas. When Operation Babylift was launched they were asked if they could adopt one of the children but– believing their plate was already plenty full–.they declined the offer. (They would soon find out that God had other plans for them!)
Late one evening they received a call from a Babylift coordinator asking for their help. There was one little boy, about a year old, who no one would adopt because of the severity of his facial abnormalities. The caller admitted they were starting to panic as he asked; “Would you be willing to care for this little boy until a home is found for him?” The Workings’ agreed to provide foster care, until a home was found.
The next day, Miji described how she struggled inwardly as she drove her car to the place where she was to meet the little boy. As she was about to drive into the parking lot Miji prayed, “Lord, just please help me see this little guy with Your eyes.” She parked her car and walked into the building. She found the waiting room where there was lots of activity as the children were being introduced to their new families. Miji was sitting to one side of the room when she glanced up to see the beautiful brown eyes of a child peeking at her over the shoulder of what turned out be one of the Babylift workers. Miji described how her heart was touched by the pair of eyes looking at her to the point where she found herself thinking, “Oh Lord, if only the child you have for us would have such beautiful eyes!” When the worker turned toward her Miji could see that the little boy with the beautiful brown eyes had a chasm where his mouth and nose should be. This was the little boy no one wanted but who captured the hearts of the Working family. They named him “Tom” and they did decide to adopt him.
In fact, I was delighted to see him, a highly energetic boy of about seven playing with a bunch of other kids. At that time, Tom and his family had endured numerous surgeries and would face many more as he grew. I saw how the power of God’s love and mercy, imparted through the Workings, had made an amazing difference in Tom’s life.
Since then, I have been blessed by following Miji’s example, praying, “Lord, give me Your eyes to see , , , “ this person or situation through eyes of faith. He then helps me to take a deep breath, step back and see the situation with grace-filled eyes of love and mercy. I have encouraged many a client with Miji’s story and witnessed the fruit of blessing in their lives. .
Two Scriptures come to mind that help to underscore the wisdom of seeking Jesus’ eyes when facing trials of many kinds. James 1:5 encourages us:
“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”
The Apostle Paul imparted this piece of wisdom in II Corinthians 4:7-9 and 16-18,
“But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed . . . Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.“
No matter what you may be facing, God will open your eyes to new possibilities . . . all you need to do is ask!
All to His Glory!