An Orphan All Grown Up
By Desi Stephens
My name is Desi Stephens and I was an orphan. Today – I’m a grown woman with a family that loves and encourages me. My life has been forever changed by God’s great grace! Because of what I’ve experienced, I want to use my life to passionately serve the world’s lost and forgotten children!
The first six years of my life were spent in Bulgaria. As I remember my time as an orphan, I have faint memories of the buildings I lived in and the people I lived with, but I stongly remember feeling so alone.
The day I left the orphanage and moved to Portland, Oregon was the day I came alive. I experienced unconditional love for the first time when I met my adoptive family.
What a day that was for me! What a life God has given me. My family was able to give me a better life than I ever could have had growing up in the institutions of Bulgaria.
My adoption experience literally changed my life. God used it to give me a dream and a desire to serve orphans on an international level. This desire first led me to become involved with Youth With A Mission (YWAM). I was part of a team that worked in the Sudan for three months. During this time God confirmed that He was calling me to serve Him around the world.
God recently reconnected me with Heather Radu. How amazing it is to be with her again. I remember the day she came to my orphanage in Bulgaria. She had a camera in hand as she shot pictures and began to connect these orphans with their forever families. I was the orphan then and she was the young woman with a passion to serve. Today we’re both women with a calling from God to serve children around the world.
I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be living at Dorie’s Promise Guatemala this summer and working with Heather, Ashley, Alej, and Keri on the mission program. My prayer is that you can come to Dorie’s Promise and experience the work that God is doing there and see how lives in Dorie’s Promise and around Guatemala City are being forever changed. My life is a testament to this kind of work and I invite you to come and experience it. When you do, you will see God change your life too!