Love in the Flesh

April 11th, 2012

“By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 

But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?

My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.”


And now, down to brass tacks.


Every day I care for my daughter Katie in the flesh.

She is a real, flesh-and-blood human being, a child in our family.

I touch her, hold her, carry her. She has weight, solidity, scent, texture, personality, preferences, habits…


…skin that gets dry and needs ointment, a tummy that needs to be fed…


…hair that needs to be washed and combed.  She gets messy when I’m teaching her how to feed herself.  I get messy, too!

She needs me to take her to the potty at regular intervals all throughout the day. She needs regular sleep.


We are present with her, we interact with her, we teach her things she doesn’t know.


Katie is completely dependent on us in every nitty-gritty detail of life.


We can’t minister to Katie’s needs at a distance.  We can’t take proper care of her without getting messy and tired and sore in the process.

Just like Christ could not minister to people’s needs at a distance.  He couldn’t care for people without getting messy and tired and sore in the process.

Christ wasn’t some ethereal spirit wafting through the Holy Land.  He took on flesh! His mother cared for Him in the flesh! He served others in the flesh! He died a humiliatingly public and painful death in the flesh!

He had one physical life to spend.  He spent his physical life on others and died a physical death for others, out of love and obedience to His Father.

If we love with Christ’s love, it will show up in the physical realities of our everyday lives too, because…


Christ’s love is love in the flesh.


Friends, we’re getting down to the flesh-and-blood reality of this story. Are you ready?


God is moving mightily for the children imprisoned in the Pleven orphanage, and for other desperately needy orphans!  He is moving!

Are you ready?


Here is a little one from Pleven who is available right now for adoption.

His name is “Sam.”  I hold this precious human being up to your view.  He has multiple special needs.

Please see this tiny boy’s worth in the eyes of God!


You can read more about “Sam” if you click on this link.  And see him in action if you watch this youtube video from minutes 8:37 to 8:57.

“Sam” is listed with the Children’s House International adoption agency.  Please email or call (360) 383-0623.

Please spread the word and pray that Sam’s family steps forward for him quickly!


More needy flesh-and-blood children from Pleven will become available.

Are you ready?


There are other very needy children waiting in other orphanages, including another baby house in Bulgaria where very malnourished children were recently discovered.

“Milena” is in this baby house.  This is the older photo of her that her future Daddy and Mommy saw when they committed to her.


I have seen recently-updated photos of Milena that made anguished tears run down my face.  Milena doesn’t know it yet, but her family is coming for her. Thank You, Lord!

Other real, flesh-and-blood children from her baby house should be listed on Reece’s Rainbow soon. 

Are you ready?


There is Ekaterina, still waiting in Russia.

She is a year younger than Katie.  She has been in my heart with the Pleven children since the day I first saw her photo.  She has the same skinny, dried-up, hopeless look Katie used to have, and her days are numbered, as she has already been transferred to an institution.

Please, I beg of you, could someone who qualifies to adopt from Russia and is home study-ready go and get this precious child before she gives up and dies?  If you do, you will have the privilege of being the hands and feet of Christ that will transform her life! Please email


Every one of these lives is inexpressibly valuable in the eyes of God.

Every one of them is worth fighting for.

Do you believe that truth?  Would you put your life where your mouth is?  Are you ready to go beyond words, and act when God tells you to act?


Those who institutionalized them, and those who neglected them, believe they’re not worth loving as sons and daughters.

“When we can’t find a home for a child, we are confirming their beliefs.”

The truth is, if God calls someone to adopt one of these little ones, and that person refuses, he is just as guilty as those who say the child has no value.  He is saying, “You are not worth the trouble.”

[Please read that again and note that I did not just say that everyone who hears about the children should adopt one.  Furthermore, other people answer to God and not to us.  But you need to know the hard truth that if you say no to God when He calls you to adopt one of these needy little ones, you are complicit in the crimes against them.]   


Friends, we’re getting down to the nitty-gritty.  There are children waiting.  More children are coming.


God is freeing very needy children to be adopted.

Are you ready?


He is calling families to the inestimable privilege of bringing these very needy children home.

Yes, He is also calling thousands of people to be the support system for the adoptive families.  Thousands can pray, help spread the word, and help pay the required ransom money.  We can give to help the children while they are waiting.

All of those things are vitally necessary!

But prayers, publicity and ransom money are not parents.


These children need real, flesh-and-blood parents to go get them and bring them home.

 Are you ready?

If God calls your name, please say “Yes.”








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11 Responses to “Love in the Flesh”

  1. C. says:

    I hope Sam gets his family soon! Thank you for such a nice blog! I am glad Katie is doing so much better than she was when you brought her home.
    I just wanted to let you know about Kolya who is waiting in B. who is in a different orphanage, yet he has asthma and abnormally low weight and he needs a family soon.

  2. Grace says:

    Susanna, I love you. Thank you for speaking the truth. Thank you for advocating for the least of these. Thank you for not shrinking back from the BIG message that God has called you to speak. Thank you for being a real flesh and blood role model for me. I am thankful beyond words that God has given me such a godly woman to look up to. Bless you, my friend.

  3. Joleigh says:

    Oh, Susanna… every day that you update and I read your blog I have morning tears instead of coffee.  It’s such a blessing to watch the events in Pleven unfold as these children finally see justice and experience love for the first time.  I’m praying hard that more who read this will realize that they are called, equipped and responsible to step in to adopt.  Bulgaria and the world need to see that there is no such thing as a “throw-away” child.  I just wanted to post a note to anyone considering Sam.  Children’s House International is an AMAZING agency.  They have worked to help me bring my daughter home from Bulgaria and the case manager for Bulgaria is an advocate for these children on a level that truly humbles and amazes me daily.  I know that God led me to my Clara, and I am constantly amazed that He sent Nina to help bring her home.  She has made the process understandable and when things get frustrating she has made me LAUGH.  I know that people often wonder about an agency if they’re not familiar with them and want to hear from someone with experience.  I am 100% satisfied and even beyond that THRILLED with what CHI has done to help me bring my Clara girl home!

  4. Rochelle Wilson says:

    Well said, as always!!

  5. Rachel says:

    I hope someday God calls us to bring one of these treasures home. And until then, I hope I have the pleasure of seeing His Church in action! Thank you for sharing!

  6. Sharon Robbins says:

    Susanna, if my husband and I were to bring home one of the children you love who would look much like Katie in the beginning is there anything you can share with me about those early days that I have not gleaned from your blog?  We would not be coming home to older children ready to help out.  We currently have 5 at home from 17 to 3 year old twins.  We run the “disability spectrum” from high functioning autism to CP to DS and just run of the mill delays.  Ours is not a quiet house (one of my biggest concerns) but our children are generous and loving.  We’ve had foster children (infants) coming through our home for the last 17 years- up to 3 at a time, so we are not timid about the get your hands dirty part of child rearing.  What we do have is a family support system that would shake their heads at us one more time and then dig in to love and help care for anyone we bring home in any way they are able.  We are fortunate indeed.  In your opinion, which I would value very much, would a household like ours be a place that a child coming home in that condition would be able to tolerate and thrive in or would it just be too much?  I would be happy to share with you who we are considering.  Also, my friend Lauren (who has been in contact with you regarding Pleven children and another sweetie in the same country) can vouch for us :)  Thank you and I apologize in advance if I am being presumptuous for asking you for all this info- I know your minutes are precious.  Please feel free to say so and there will be do offense!

  7. Lauren says:

    PLEASE join me in prayer!!!
    I inquired about the specifics of little Sam and found out that he has a syndrome similar to “proteus”. I had no idea what that was so I googled it and it said that it is a malformation of the body (in Sam’s case on the right side of his body) and can sometimes cause scoliosis due to the weight of the extremities. When I Googled what “proteus” was “The Elephant Man” came up. He just happens to be my all-time favorite person in history! I watch that movie every year at Thanksgiving to remind me of all God has done for me and to remind me to love the unloved. My children watch it too and are always sympathetic towards John Merrick. This last year my son asked where we would “kiss” him since his face was so “lumpy”. Anyway, PLEASE join me in prayer that if this is the little man we are to adopt that God would give both my husband and I a peace about it as well as show us it’s time to move forward. I have to say my heart skipped when I saw “The Elephant Man’s” face on Google as it’s always been my desire to adopt a child like him.
    The extent of medical care for Sam is overwhelming my husband and he came home from work today with a ruptured vein in his eye that is giving him a headache and irritating him so he’s in no mood to talk. Please PRAY!!!! God just may be at work!!

  8. Katie says:

    God hasn’t just called my name, He has screamed it.  It is SO HARD to know I have to wait two more years to fulfill His plan, when these children are waiting NOW… but I know there must be some reason to His timing.  Until then, I’m going to keep harping on the needs of orphans so that other people might feel that call in their own lives, who are ready to do it now – and support the families that are doing it, because we know rarely anyone can do this alone.  I’m going to keep collecting money in my jar.  I’m going to keep moving forward with my life in a way that will allow me to be prepared to bring one of those little ones home as soon as I am able.  I wonder if I could have paperwork and initial funds ready to go before I turn 25, then just wait to send it in until my birthday?  What an awesome birthday present that would be, getting to put the first steps of my adoption into place!  

    I didn’t sleep for nearly two months after you brought Katie home.  I couldn’t believe that anyone would do that to a child, let alone systematically treat hundreds of children that way, and across many ‘civilized’ countries.  To a human being!  How can you look at a child and think of them as anything other than a little PERSON?  How can you feel their complete and utter dependence on you and turn away from that?  

    My DBK AJ is HARD WORK.  He has special needs, I’m not sure yet what they are, we’re waiting on a behavioral evaluation to be rescheduled, but he has been different and very high maintenence since birth.  Today, by naptime, he’d had two time outs, thrown three toys out of anger, had countless tantrums (usually following the word ‘no’), and broken one picture frame.  And yet, when I pick him up, he wraps his little arms and legs around me and lays his head on my shoulder and pats my back like I pat his… and I think… not only could I never make the choice to do anything but what I’m doing, I don’t WANT to.  God put them in my life for a reason… and as ‘lucky’ as everyone says they are to have me (pshh, I’m a train wreck, LOL.  Yesterday I cut my finger peeling an EZ peel orange.  Bahaha) – I’M the lucky one.  They make my days.  People think they can’t do it, they’re afraid to take that leap of faith that will change their lives forever because change is scary, the unknown is scary… but you know, and I know, that if we hadn’t said “Yes” at some point… we wouldn’t have the blessings that are being rained down upon us now… in every smile, every giggle, every little bit of progress, every moment of togetherness.

    I feel a blog post coming on.  Or perhaps a number of blog posts. 

  9. Susanna says:

    Sharon Robbins, I will gladly correspond with you by email about all these considerations. Thank you so much for writing!

  10. Sharon Robbins says:

    Thank you so much, Susanna!  Are you able to pull my email address off your blog info or is there another way I should get it to you?  Anytime is great.  I’m hoping to get the home study ball rolling very soon.  I think we will be using the same agency that Lauren H. used and they were able to push their’s through pretty quickly.  Again, thank you!

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