The Underdog Wins!
// August 15th, 2012 // Loux Family News
Our friend Peter Kiiskila has been part of an amazing support system to our family! When my husband Derek and I adopted 3 of our beautiful special needs children from Ukraine, Peter worked alongside Derek and I, learning how to serve and help us with Sasha’s needs. After my husband was killed in an accident, Peter continued to be a wonderful mentor to Sasha, loving him and spending great amounts of time with him, instilling in him, the truth that he is priceless and so very loved!
(Sasha and Peter)
Peter is on our Orphan Justice Center Staff, serving as our Director of Mentoring. We are incredibly blessed by Peter and his commitment to sew into the lives of so many children who desperately need to know their value! Thank you Peter for your amazing life! You are such a testament of God’s love and we are so very blessed by the example of all you are! You are a gift to many and the Loux tribe loves you!
Peter recently wrote an article on our Orphan Justice Center blog. I would love to share it with you (below).
The Underdog Wins!
No one would think that a handicapped boy from Ukraine would make it. But he was destined for greatness.
Sasha Loux went to the stage and wheeled himself up the ramp with seemingly little effort. His hands were nimble and rapid, turning the wheels of his chair. Dozens of young hearts in the crowd watched in near unbelief as this little boy sped toward center stage. As he got into place, the talent show’s M.C. worked vigorously to entertain other young contenders in their steel chariots.
Quickly, I made my way to the front with our dueling guitars—one for me and the other for Sasha, the maestro. Sasha unbuckled his seat belt. I could feel the anticipation of his spirit. His eyes were alive with joy, and he was doing his unique excitement dance—cocking his head back and swirling in a half circle.
I grabbed the nine-year-old boy, who seemed to weigh less than a sack of potatoes, and I gently sat him down on the stage. His microphone stood no taller than the hole on the back of a bass drum, yet it reached Sasha’s mouth. We mounted our guitars and I looked down to give him our cue to start.
In this moment, I had a flashback to a time before he arrived. Less than four years ago, who’s audience would he have had? Living in the back hills of Ukraine in an orphanage filled will special-needs children, he might have thought only the boy sitting next to him would listen.
During his first six years at the orphanage, he had the audience of One who was tenderly watching him even before he was conceived. The Father of the fatherless was watching with joy and compassion in His heart. Something was brewing in this Father’s heart. He had plans to prosper him, to give him a hope and a future.
“Now I have a purpose; now I have destiny. You made me for Your glory; You made me for Your glory!” Sasha’s words rang out over the crowd of other children with spina bifida. Maybe that was all those kids needed to hear from the boy who came out of a little orphanage in Ukraine.
Statistics would have said that he didn’t have a chance. The odds were stacked against him, but this underdog’s world turned around when one family decided to take him in. They had the audacity to believe that his life was worth more than what his society had rendered him. Validation doesn’t come from the East or the West. But the eyes of the Lord search to and fro, searching for a loyal heart where He might display His power and love.
The underdog wins.
– Peter Kiiskila
Peter Kiiskila obtained his B.A. from North Central University in Minneapolis,MN, majoring in cross cultural studies with a international business focus. In 2004 and 2005, he completed an internship in Uganda, Africa, working with two non-profit organizations that exist to create holistic development in the local villages and to restore and reunite street children with living family members. In 2010, he went to Zimbabwe to work with community-based orphan care outside of the capital city, Harare. Later that year he completed the Orphan Justice Center’s Fellowship, a three-month intensive to gain understanding in the issues surrounding the orphan. He currently serves with the Orphan Justice Center as the Director of Mentoring, as well as serving with a non-profit organization to rescue, adopt, and restore orphans in the US.