It was Mother’s day yesterday and as much as I had a wonderful day filled with love and life, this year was different. There was an ache in my heart that I just couldn’t shake. As you might have noticed I wasn’t up for much blogging last week. It was one of those weeks where every post seemed so trivial. Does that ever happen to you? A bit of that carried over into Mother’s Day I guess. I love my husband and my girls with everything I have, but there are so many children in this world who need so much more. My heart was thinking of all the children in the foster care system who really just want to be back with their own Mothers and can’t. My heart breaks for those children, for those families. Do we realize the need around us? In our neighboring, tiny, tiny county, they had almost 30 kids that needed to be placed in stable, loving homes in one week. One week?!?! That blows my mind. Can you imagine what the need is in an actual city? Let’s not just live in our beautiful bubbles, let’s get passionate about something and make some change. There is real brokenness, that needs REAL change all around us. That doesn’t just mean fostering, adoption or orphan care. I know not everyone is called to help in those areas, however, there are lots of ways we can make a difference around us. We are all busy. I get it, I do. It has just been so heavy on my heart lately that we need to do more. I keep thinking over and over how foster care is sort of a bandage for a greater problem. It’s such an important step to healing but what if we never got hurt and needed the bandaid in the first place? How can we support, love and encourage these families from the very start? I don’t want to see broken families.
I have been sitting on this blog post all day. So many thoughts are rolling around in my head. I just haven’t figured out how to get them all out. A blog friend sent over a link to this blog and I seriously can’t stop reading all the posts on fostering and adoption. Jason Johnson writes everything that’s in my heart. I can’t even come close to expressing it better than him. Here are a few excerpts from some blog posts that I’ve been reading over and over today…
“On one side of foster care is the need for us to respond to the plight of these kids and intercede on their behalf. It’s right and honorable and a reflection of the heart of God to secure and protect the rights of the helpless and hopeless. On the other side of foster care is the need for us to proactively respond to the brokenness of families and intercede on their behalf to ensure that their children never become foster kids in the first place. This too is right and honorable and a reflection of the heart of God to bring healing to what is broken and hope to what otherwise is destined for destruction.”
“This is foster care – interceding into dark stories in order to bring light into them. It’s advocating the cause of the helpless, seeking justice for the defenseless and maintaining the rights of the oppressed. This is nothing less than what Jesus has done for us. We, therefore, are compelled to do the same for them.”
“This is the essence of the battle we engage in and the platform upon which Jesus is presented as the true Hero. If the real enemy in the care of orphans is not the biological parents but Satan who kills and destroys lives and families, then the true hero is not those who foster or adopt or care for orphans in some other capacity – it is Jesus Himself. The heroic efforts of so many who fight for justice for the marginalized and even adopt children into new forever families only points to the work of the true Hero who redeems and heals and restores and transforms grievous wrongs into glorious rights. Any sense of a personal “hero complex” must be crucified on the altar of pointing to Jesus as the real Hero.”
“I know we can provide her a good home, a safe and loving environment, possibilities and opportunities that she may not otherwise have available to her if she were not with us. I know she will be loved here, cared for here and protected with every ounce of our energy from things that are dangerous, harmful or unhealthy for her. Yet, for all that we may be able to provide, God’s ability to be good to her in a difficult environment is far greater than any good we could offer her in a comfortable one. No amount of “good” we can give her can compare with the goodness of the sovereignty of God in her life, wherever she may end up living it. There are no guarantees in foster care, except one – God is sovereign in the life of this baby girl. He is good, and He will be good to her always, no matter where she lays her head at night.”
I want to be frank for a minute and say for some reason talking about foster care has opened up the flood gates for negative comments about our family here and on other sites. I have not read any of the comments other than the ones that have been written directly on my site. I am not sure why it’s happening and honestly I am not sure I will ever understand why. It’s ok though. I stand firm in our calling to become foster care parents. I trust what the Lord is doing in our family. I am no hero nor am I am trying to be a superhero out to “save” families. I’m not perfect (not even close!). I have my short comings and I fail daily as a parent. I do try my best though and I was tired of sitting on the side lines saying I wanted to help. You may not think I am a great person, mother, wife, whatever but I hope that through any of this you can respect that we are at least trying to do something. I am not looking for glory. If fact the whole notion of people praising us for this makes me feel uncomfortable.
Let’s love. Let’s get involved and let’s remember this is not about ourselves, it has everything to do with these kids and these families.
(I am not sure what kind of pictures you put with this kind of post?- anyway, since it was Mother’s Day and I do feel forever thankful for my girls. Here we are.)