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No Greater Love
by Candy Chand
Many of us dream of following our destiny, of making a positive difference in the world. But few are willing, especially if that willingness constitutes leaving our homes, friends, relatives, our very nation, and moving to a remote village in Ethiopia to save children caught in a secret culture of infanticide.
Levi Benkert said a quick “Yes” to his destiny--although he never saw it coming. Levi, a Northern California land developer, was living a young business man’s dream when the real estate market collapsed.
Answering his cell for what he assumed was another banker with more bad news, he heard a casual acquaintance, Steve, on the other line, asking him to drop everything and fly to Ethiopia. A group of photographers, Steve explained, traveling in Ethiopia, had just rescued a young girl named Bale—a child about to be murdered by elders from her remote village.
But there was more to the story. The photographers had also uncovered a long standing superstition that labeled children “mingi” (unclean or cursed) if they displayed even the slightest physical imperfection. Children could be deemed mingi for something as simple as their top teeth coming in before the bottom.
Once declared mingi, Steve explained, the children were murdered to protect the village from evil spirits.
Levi struggled to understand what he was hearing. The youngest of the mingi babies are often left in the jungle to starve or have dirt stuffed in their mouths to cause suffocation, while older children are bound and thrown into the river to drown. The latter was to be Bale’s fate.
Except, in this case, the photographers had intervened, pleading with the elders on Bale’s behalf. They promised to remove her far from the village to “free their people from the curse.” It was not necessary for her to die, they insisted, only be taken away. Reluctantly, the elders agreed, allowing Bale to be delivered to her rescuers by small boat, traveling safely up the river—the same river where she was to be drowned.
But there were many more mingi children, Steve explained. To be saved, they’d need to establish a place of refuge—an orphanage. Levi’s help was needed. They were desperate. Would he come?
Torn by what he heard, but convinced he had to remain in the U.S. to unwind the last of his failing business, he hesitated.
However, the moment Levi told his wife Jessie, she insisted he drop everything and go. Go to Ethiopia. The timing. The call. The need. It had to be destiny.
So, Levi left for what he thought would be a 2 week trip. But he was wrong.
Once he met Bale, face to face, there was no turning back.
Within 6 weeks, Levi, his wife and three young children, were on a plane relocating to Ethiopia. Indefinitely.
And in just 8 weeks, the orphanage harbored 8 rescued children.
That was in early 2009. And soon after? The orphanage was bursting at the seams with 33 thriving children. Thirty-three lives spared. Thirty-three destinies about to be fulfilled.
It’s estimated that, each year, as many as a thousand Ethiopian children are victims of mingi infanticide. Although Levi is no longer working with the same orphanage, he did adopt one of the mingi children--a newborn who was rescued immediately after her parents stuffed dirt in her mouth. Her name is Edalawit, which translates from Amharic as "The Lucky One."
Levi's now in the process, with the cooperation of the Ethiopian government, of opening a large orphanage, called Bring Love In, located in Addis Ababa. His memoir, No Greater Love: One Man's Radical Journey through the Heart of Ethiopia will be released to stores nationwide in July, but can be purchased, Now, as a pre-order on Amazon at this link: Pre-Order No Greater Love on Amazon
Writer Candy Chand is an author of 7 books, the newest coauthored with Levi Benkert (his memoir) . She can be reached at PatCan85@hotmail.com
Creation Q & A
Q: When a giraffe lowers its head toward the ground, wouldn't you expect the blood pressure to increase so much that its brain would explode?
A: It's true that the giraffe's blood pressure rises so much that it might cause its brain to explode. But, this doesn't happen because the giraffe has a series of incredible features. This includes reinforced artery walls, bypass valves, as well as pressure-sensing signals that all work together to maintain the proper blood pressure.
But then comes the real trick. As the giraffe raises its head, the same systems used to reduce the pressure when the head is lowered, also act to increase the pressure as the head is raised (so the giraffe doesn't pass out). The problem for evolutionists is this. How many giraffes blew their brains to pieces when bending down--how many passed out as they lifted their heads, becoming food for the lions--until the special features somehow evolved? It's obvious that the very first giraffes had to have these special features right from the beginning. If not, they wouldn't have survived to pass them on to their offspring! Of course, this is not at all surprising to those who believe in a Creator who created everything in six days, not billions of years!
Click on the Bible above or visit the web site listed below!
This new addition to our web site will give you an article on the leading news in the
Creation/Evolution controversy each day. This section also includes a rotating
Question and Answer feature and a weekly Creation Comic strip from the people
at AnswersInGenesis.org. Be sure to come back and visit each day for an informative
article that will help you keep up to date on the latest news in this controversial area
Thought For The Day
"Here is the test to see if your mission here on earth is finished: If you are alive, it isn't." --Richard Bach
Verse for the Day
"For as the days of a tree, so will be the days of my people; my chosen ones will long enjoy the works of
Kid's Thought For The Day
"Sometimes you need a little push to go down the big slide."
Parent's Thought For The Day
"If your baby is 'beautiful and perfect, never cries or fusses, sleeps on schedule and burps on demand, an angel all the time', you're the grandma." --Theresa Bloomingdale
Coach's Thought For The Day
"We're never as good as we think we are, nor as bad as we think we are."
Writer's Thought for the Day
"Use plain, simple language, short words and brief sentences. That is the way to write English -- it is the modern way and the best way. Stick to it; don't let fluff and flowers and verbosity creep in. When you catch an adjective, kill it. No, I don't mean utterly, but kill most of them -- then the rest will be valuable. A wordy habit, once fastened upon a person, is as hard to get rid of as any other vice." --Mark Twain
Deep Thought For The Day
"Yesterday, I bet my friend $10 that I could guess any number I hold behind my back. I made $10."
Inspired Audio -- Inspirational Audio Message of the Week!
Inspired Audio is a new offshoot of HeartTouchers.com. Every week we will offer a different audio message that you can listen to right on your computer as you are surfing the net or just getting things done around the house. Be sure to come back and visit each week!
This Week: "A Strong Tower"
Over 275,000 people have listened to popular Chicken Soup Author Michael T. Powers' free inspirational message entitled: "Breathing Life into Others". If you aren't one of them just visit: http://www.HeartTouchers.com and click on the link to listen to the free streaming audio message.
Video Imagery --Michael's Video Production Business
"I just wanted to take a minute to thank you for the beautiful video you made for me! It was so special to see both of my parents in tears as they watched their children grow up in pictures before their eyes! I loved the way you made Estania's part set aside from the rest--that was the part that really got them! The music was beautiful. My mom kept blubbering, "What song is that?" I don't know how you did such a beautiful job with the video in such a short time. I really appreciate your doing it so quickly. You have a wonderful gift, and I thank God that you are using it to create such sentimental memories. I hope that I can find my niche like that in an area that I love. Your video gave us one of our most lasting Christmas memories! I hope yours was filled with moments to be treasured forever!"
Let me make you a video from your photos! Check out my video production business by visiting:
Do you feel as if life has no meaning for you?