We Needed a Father…

Since God has a Son of His own, and such a Son, how wonderful God’s love in adopting us! We needed a Father, but He did not need sons. Thomas Watson

Take a moment to let the quote above sink in. The Father did not need us, but He CHOSE us. He had an amazing Son. He had no reason or need to fill a gap or void in His life. He was already fulfilled, and yet, we needed a Father. Our foster care journey has never been about filling a void or need, it has always been about children needing a home. Our spiritual adoption causes us to act, our Father moves us to respond, and our lives will have no greater cause than to be poured out for those who need it most.

God didn’t need our sin, our brokenness, our rebellion, and our failure. He did not need our disrespect, our acting out, and our behavioral issues. But, He knew we needed a Father who could handle all of that and still love us, redeem us, and create all things anew in us.

He had a Son, but you and I were fatherless, so He chose us!

There are over 400,000 children in the Foster Care system nationally. You may not need a son or a daughter, but there are children and teenagers out there who need a home, a parent, a role model, a mentor–there are children who need to know that someone has chosen them.

Our adoption should always cause us to act and move as those who have been graciously and overwhelmingly adopted.


Are We Enough?

In a few short days we will welcome a sibling group of four into our home.  As we talked tonight, the fear, the anxiety, and the excitement began to sink in…..

Will we be good enough?

Will we love enough?

Will we trust enough?

Will we offer enough?

Will we BE enough for all six children in our home?

The journey that began in college over 12 years ago is coming to fruition.  We can see the path…Youth Pastor, Special Education Teacher, CPS Investigator, friends who have fostered, Adoption Coordinator, State Director, friends who have adopted, Mother’s Day Out teacher, biological children–each step taking us one step closer and preparing us furthermore for the journey that lies ahead.  No step unplanned nor unnecessary.  And yet, the question lingers, are we enough?  The answer–no.

The truth; He never called us to be enough, only to follow Him, as He is enough.


May you be enough for us and the children, both biological and foster, that you have called us to love, serve, protect, and care for.  We are inadequate, but you are always more than enough.  Thank you for the call, but even more for the journey.  Amen.

Adoption Disruption…Let’s be Honest

Let’s be honest.  God is perfect, His character is perfect, His creation was intended to be perfect….but, WE created brokenness, confusion, selfishness and imperfection when WE, as humanity, made a decision in the Garden to choose that which was not good for us.  It was in that moment that the original plan, intent, and perfect creation of God was broken.  We did that, not God.  So, when the world is in chaos, disease is rampant, and nature is groaning, let us not blame or presume that it is God’s plan.  Instead, collectively we should own up to it; lay blame where blame is due…..on us.

In the ‘Christian’ Adoption & Foster Care world, one of the most overused and non-theological statements often utilized is, “We prayed about it and we feel God has released us from this child.”  Just today I spent 20-30 minutes listening to a fellow adoption co-worker share her heart, brokenness and righteous anger over a “perfect adoptive placement” that ended with “well, we prayed about it…”  Where does that fall in line with the character of God?  Don’t get me wrong, this is not a “throw stones at others” kind of thing.  I am very aware of my own sin, my own brokenness, my own selfishness, and the imperfect choices I have made.  This is more about, not bringing God into a conversation and/or giving him credit for something He is not about, such as adoption disruptions.  We cannot claim God wove the adoption together in one breath and in the next claim God has released us from such a commitment, because let’s be honest, it just didn’t work out for you, your spouse and/or your family.  Every broken placement, failed adoption, unfulfilled promise creates further trauma in the child whom ultimately is the one to carry the load of consequences for such broken choices.  So, please don’t hide behind the God card because it is convenient and gives you peace.

So, what do I tell adoptive families currently in training?  I simply tell them that if they ever get to a place humanly that they make the choice that a child can no longer stay in their home then I need them to tell me humanly why they are making that decision.  Please do not bring God into that conversation, because tossing aside the “least of these”, “fatherless”, and the “orphan” is not part of God’s DNA.  It simply does not match up with the God of Scripture or the Redeemer of the Gospel.  So, own up to it.  Humanly admit where you are at.  That is the place where true and open dialogue can begin.

God’s original plan was broken by us, and since then, He has been on a path of rescue, redemption, restoration, and adoption.  None of which align with the statement, “We prayed about it and God has released us…”  That statement aligns with the popular belief that whatever God calls us too should fit neatly into our lives without any mess, any consequence, any hardship, or any heartbreak.  Which, if you’re wondering, also doesn’t match up with the God of the Gospel.

25 Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said: 26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. 27 And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.

28 “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? 29 For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, 30 saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’ Matthew 14:25-30

Count the cost friends…because, there are children, in need of adoptive homes, counting on you.

****As a professional in the child welfare field I have seen times when an adoptive placement has broken down for some pretty damaging reasons, such as sexual abuse, physical abuse, reactive attachment disorder that was previously undiagnosed and several other reasons.  This post takes all of those things into account and is not meant to be a blanket statement over every adoption disruption, but more of a call to all who would consider the adoption path.  Be mindful of what God is calling you to, commit to that, and pray.  But, ultimately if it breaks down, evaluate that breakdown, humanly accept it, and never blame or give credit to God for the disruption.  He is perfect and He makes perfect choices; we are imperfect and we make imperfect choices.


A World that Stopped Dreaming…

“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you’ve imagined.”   – Henry David Thoreau
At some point the world tries to do it to all of us.  Maybe when we least expect it.  Or perhaps we are willing participants believing the whispers in our ear.  Most never escape the world’s clutch, but occasionally there are a few who rebel, break the trend and deviate from the intended path.  They are the one’s we applaud, admire, give affirmation too and even criticize, all the while believing we have missed our opportunity to join them.  And yet, we all started out the same.  A new life born full of dreams, hopes, and aspirations.  Though, somewhere along the line, we became civilized, convinced that our wildest dreams were never meant to be fulfilled.  So, instead we take on the status quo dream of America; settle down, live in the same community, have 2.5 kids, buy a house, buy a car, save for retirement, take an occasional vacation and fall in line with the rest of those whom also exchanged their dream for a much more safe and responsible one.  And still, as much as we long to silence our dreams and find contentment in the now, for most of us the dreams still fester deep within our soul…..maybe it is to open your own business, maybe it is to serve at an orphanage in a foreign country, maybe it is to take a year off work and travel the world, maybe it is to adopt a child, maybe it is to learn a new profession, maybe it is to start a new non-profit, maybe it is to write a book, maybe it is to spend more time with your kids, maybe it is to learn a new language, maybe it is to become a foster parent, or maybe it is to open a hot dog stand.  Regardless of the dream, most will admit it never goes away, we just do a good job of hiding it deep beneath our current life, believing it is but a dream, and yet we never stop applauding those who kept believing, kept dreaming and took the path less traveled into a place where their dreams wove into reality.
What is your dream?  Why not ‘live the life you’ve imagined’?