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Adopt | Foster Now Found Blog

THE Question Everyone Asks

Continuing along on our journey of being a foster family, I wanted to chat about THE question that inevitably always comes up when talking to someone unfamiliar with or new to foster care: “How will you be able to let them go?”

Well, last week was our first personal experience with this, so I feel like I finally have a credible answer to give.  First of all, every family is different and every child’s case is different.  Some kids end up going to places that are less than ideal in the eyes of the foster parents.  Others go to safe, loving homes.  And still others go to places that have been proven unsafe and unloving, with a good chance that this child could end up back in the system.  So, I will not presume to touch on every varying possibility, but I am more than happy to share our own experience and hopefully it’s an encouragement to you.

Last week, our sweet little foster daughter left us to go live with a relative.  We had the privilege of caring for her and including her in our family for four months.  We got to see her first steps, teach her new words and smother her in love.  In return, we were blessed with her smiles and kisses and the peace of knowing that we were exactly where God wanted us to be.

Looking back over the course of those months, I see God’s favor everywhere!  We worked with some amazing people, from CPS workers (yep, it’s true!) to hospital staff to our agency, support group and more.  The people on this case cared about her well-being most of all and it was such a blessing to see that happening.  It was a crazy mixture of emotions that swept over me when we were told that she would be leaving “next week”.  Suddenly we had to think about gathering all her possessions and inventorying them, all the while feeling so grieved and saddened that we may not ever see her again.  I vacillated between peace and mourning, relief and deep sadness, excitement for her and fear about her transitioning.  Up and down for days!

But one thing helped us the most: from the very beginning of this journey for us, we kept in mind that until God tells us otherwise, these children that we invite into our family are not “ours”…at least not yet.  We are the caretakers standing in while their forever home is prepared.  Our hope has always been to adopt, and that is still the case.  But until that is legally available as an option to us, God has helped us give love freely and fully, while still holding them loosely in our hearts.

People often say, “I could never do that!  I’d get too attached and wouldn’t want them to go!”  I get it…we got attached too.  She was so unbelievably precious, it would’ve been a lost cause to even try to avoid attachment.  And that’s exactly what I said when I tried to avoid walking this road two years ago.  But God dropped peace on me, over and over and over again.  I knew that it was okay for my heart to get a little bruised and it’d be worth it if I could be a safe place for God’s little princess.

Along with peace and favor, God just showed off in so many little ways!  Without seeking it out, I was invited to meet the out-of-town relative that would be the new guardian for this sweet girl.  That meeting alone dispelled fear and gave me reassurance that she’d be safe and well-loved.  I was thanked profusely for everything we did and was assured that we would be able to maintain contact and hear updates as she grows.

So, when the day came to say good-bye, along with the rest of her things, I tucked in a scrapbook with pictures and prayers to say how wonderful she is and how much she touched our lives.  We had one last dance party in the living room, watched her shake her little booty to the rhythm, shared tons of hugs and kisses and waved bye-bye as she was driven away.  The house was noticeably quiet that day (even with our two kiddos)!  I looked around at the baby things and felt her missing.  But even as we started to pack those things away and go on with the business of life, like the excitement of grocery shopping, God drenched us in peace.

Peace amidst the heartache and sadness.  Peace that helps me enjoy the back-step to two children in the house.  Peace to trust that God knows better than I do.  Peace that I am confident this adorable little girl is safe, loved and getting comfortable in her new home.

As for us, we are taking a break for a little while to rest and rejuvenate and most importantly to listen to what God has next for our family.  His timing is perfect.

 

You may also like: Room For One More and Overflowing Love

 

If you’re a foster/adoptive family or are considering it, visit Chosen Ones!  God brings special families together and this amazing ministry provides support and encouragement to make these families successful.  They have immensely blessed us in our journey and I can’t imagine having walked this road without them!

Categories
Adopt | Foster Now Found Blog

Room for One More

Pixabay-baby shoes-505471_1280

Years ago, Steve and I discussed our shared vision for adoption. I haven’t included this in my bio or posted anything about this subject up until now, I suppose, because this is still an “in the works” heart’s desire. But in the midst of our preparations for our lives to change, I felt a need to share our heart for foster care and adoption.

We get the question “Why?” a lot…sometimes in words, but usually just through people’s eyes.

Why go through the hassle to open your home to kids you don’t know, possibly face danger or hostility and be inconvenienced like that?

Why, when you have two amazing kids already…why do you want more?

Why, when you’re homeschooling and your schedule is already so full?

Why, when you aren’t overflowing with wealth and have to watch your spending very carefully?

There’s some truth in those honest questions: it won’t be convenient…we are content with the kids we have…our schedule is full…we are very prudent with our finances and don’t often get “extras.” But when God spoke to us, His voice of invitation trumped all the objections.

He gave us a desire years ago for a house full of kids…not really a specific number, just a bunch. He also gave us a clear vision statement for our family: There is always room in our home and our hearts for just one more.

One more child…one more friend…one more family member…one more son or daughter-in-law…one more grandchild…one more person who is searching or lonely…one more.

So, where are we at in this process right now? We are at a place where we are unable (aside from a healing miracle from God) to have more biological kiddos. We have kids who are amazing helpers and love babies, who are intelligent and caring. We have completed the classes, the required reading, most of the forms. We have a few hoops to jump through before we are certified to be foster parents, as our agency assures themselves of the safety of our home and the character and readiness of our family.

The kids ask several days a week, “When will a baby come?” And I reply, “Soon…just a few weeks…whenever we’ve finished our requirements and God says ‘It’s time.'” Soon…

So, why? Because God has adopted us. He is willing to deal with our messes and be inconvenienced. He is our Provider and isn’t concerned about what money is or isn’t in the bank at this moment. He knows that kids aren’t a burden in life, but a blessing. He is our Protector and will keep us safe in every situation. He has given us the calling to homeschool our kids as well and He will give us the strength and wisdom to adjust our other commitments as needed. Why? Because He loves us. He has invited us to partner with Him in loving those who have been neglected and abused, forgotten, and cast-off.

“Religion [A spiritual life] that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.” James 1:27

Perhaps He is inviting you in some way too. Maybe He’s asking you to say that you are willing to be inconvenienced…to trust more in His power than your own…to set aside the plans you have that make perfect sense by the world’s standards and be open to His plans that are beyond your own logic. Maybe we can turn our “why’s” into “why nots”. Just a thought.

 

You may also like: Overflowing Love and THE Question Everyone Asks

 

If you’re a foster/adoptive family or are considering it, visit Chosen Ones!  God brings special families together and this amazing ministry provides support and encouragement to make these families successful.  They have immensely blessed us in our journey and I can’t imagine having walked this road without them!

 

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