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Book Review! THE ORPHAN TRAIN by Christina Baker Kline

This heartfelt book is about a 17-year-old girl named Molly. Already being thought of as a “delinquent,” Molly, sadly, begins believing it. Fortunately, due to special circumstances, she encounters an old woman named Vivian. Vivian is at a point of her life where she is trying to remember her own stormy past. Her fleeing memories are hidden in a trunk. Molly—now doing community service—begins to help Vivian by helping her search a trunk where Vivian’s most trusted memories can be found.

With all the foster kids in my life—in the lives of my children, in the lives of family members and those that I see in the church—I jumped at the chance to read The Orphan Train. There are three reasons you might want to read this book.

1. If you are interested in reading an inspiring book, this is the one for you. Sometimes we get overwhelmed with the ideas about all foster kids coming from broken homes. What will happen to them? What will happen to those who “age out”? Will things ever change in this broken system of foster care? How can I make a real difference in their future if we only have them in our lives but for a flash of a moment? (Math 25 35-40).

2. If you want your faith to be encouraged, this is the one for you. From both the Old and the New Testament, we see orphans and we see the Lord’s heart for them. All throughout history, we see the consequences of man’s sinful behavior resulting in orphans. Even today, we can become overwhelmed about the numbers, and when we don’t see change, especially in the most underserved areas of the world. (Hebrews 13:16)

3. If you wonder how being in a person’s life, even for a “flash of a moment” can make a difference in someone’s life, this book is for you. This book reminded me that God has a plan and we all have a part to play (James 1:7). We must trust that the Lord has a plan for all His children. This book beautifully demonstrates how we can be used (Gal 6:9).

The book reminds us of a part of American history called The Orphan Train Movement: “The movement was a supervised welfare program that transported an estimated 250,000 orphaned and homeless children from crowded Eastern cities of the US to foster homes located largely in rural areas from 1854 to 1929. It was estimated that 30,000 abandoned children were living on the streets of New York City at the time” (see the first website listed).

But consider this verse: “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me’” (Math 25:4).

1. Orphan Train: http://orphantraindepot.org/history/

2. AZ Foster care: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/arizona-investigations/2016/09/04/arizona-children-foster-care-dcs-cps-what-you-can-do-help/89608576/

5/5 Star Review

FROM Perspectives from a Renewed Mind ~ Roxana Rogers

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