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I’m back. Again.

After sitting out most of 2013 (more on the “why” in a moment), I am re-engaged to start this new year–and planning to be here every Monday for the next twelve months. I have spent significant time these last few weeks listening to the experts explain (pontificate?) what a blog ought to look like and accomplish. It is really surprising how self-focused these experts assume we all are. It is too often about building your brand, your platform, and your tribe, with, seemingly, very little concern, if any, of us actually having anything to say. Even so, I do think I have learned a lot, and the skills acquired will help us build a community of conversation about providing for mortal-risk children.

Along the way, I will try to make it worth your while to be here. Good, meaningful writing, certainly. Perhaps a re-post of a popular writing from the last few years. But also an occasional e-book offering, content you can use to call others to the cause of the orphan, or links to other compelling writings or stories. And I will ask you to do a few things. For starters, don’t just “follow” this blog, but type your email address in the subscription box on the sidebar. That gives me permission to notify you when there’s a new post to read. (Don’t worry. I won’t share your email with anyone! If you want to receive prayer or monthly update emails from Hope Unlimited for Children, you’ll need to sign up HERE as well.)

And to the reason for my absence… Last spring several of you commented to me that you would like to see some of the thoughts here get a fuller treatment, to see a more systematic approach to issues of orphan care, of child hunger, and–very important–how we as followers should be responding. In March, I sent a book proposal to an editor with whom I had worked in the past. She didn’t think it was a good fit for her, but sent it on to the acquisitions editor in another division; a few weeks later, a contract for Dirty Faith was in hand. I really appreciated what Andy McGuire at Bethany House Publishing had to say: “This is a message the Church needs to hear.” I hope it is. And I trust that it will be heard. Publication will be in August, with all the associated fanfare and marketing hoopla. More to come on that over the next months.

But in the midst of all this, it is extremely important to me for us to keep focus where it belongs: On them. The kids. The ones dying at the rate of about one every three seconds. The 30 children who died of hunger-related causes while you read this post. They must be our focus.

So one more thing I ask you do: Make a difference for them in 2014. Don’t know what that will look like for you or how you will do it, but you can be the agent of transformation for a lost child this year. Start thinking about that… then go do it.

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