“From Paul, God Himself chose me to be an apostle and He gave me the promised life that Jesus Christ makes possible.” 2 Timothy 1:1
Being a mom of six isn’t always easy. There is always laundry to be folded, dishes to be washed, messes to be cleaned up, hugs to be given, stories to be heard, hurts to be fixed, snacks to be made, and love to be given. But, this is the promised life that Jesus has made possible for me. He has fought for me to be given this life of endless laundry and dishes, because I have been chosen (for now) to be the mom of an additional four children who are all beautiful inside and out.
This life of endless hugs and ‘I love you’s’.
This life of pouring myself out into others, but getting so much more back in return.
This life of continual blessings.
A life that can be hard at times, but then I’m reminded that I have been chosen, and, for me, that makes all the difference in the world!
One thing we love about being foster parents is the fact that the Gospel regularly comes alive in front of us. Since the first day we took children into our home we have continually expressed our love to them and reinforced how important they are to our family. The three youngest were pretty quick to reciprocate love back, although never encouraged nor expected. The oldest child, the boy, has been the most guarded with his words of affection. And then, sometime around Christmas he began writing us little notes. Each note simply said, “I love you” or “I love you so much”.
These notes are his way of sharing his heart.
Reading these notes and watching all of this unfold we are reminded of our own lives and the spiritual conflict we have had with accepting God’s love for us. And yet, regardless of our response, God has always affirmed His love and affection to us. Gradually, over time we came to a place where we began to affirm our love back to Him. It wasn’t overnight, but it took time, trust, and experiencing God’s pursuit. Similar to the process it has taken this young man to understand we love him with no strings attached.
In our opinion, the beauty of foster care is the opportunity we have to love deeply, regardless of any return of affection. To put ourselves out there day after day to love these children and affirm their importance not only to us, but to the world as a whole. Much like God has always done for both of us.
Simply, the Gospel has come alive within our home and for that we are humbled and thankful.
***The note above is his most recent one. I walked in from work this afternoon and he was very excited to give me the note he had painted earlier in the day.
Over the past several years I have read quite a bit in regards to the “theology of adoption”, but today I visibly caught a glimpse of the “theology of foster care.” In preparing to be a foster family we have had several conversations with our oldest daughter (she’s 6) about the journey and path we are on and how it will differ from the adoption path. Things such as,
children will stay with us while their mommies and daddies learn to make better choices,
they may only be with us for a few short weeks or months,
we will probably have the chance to serve several children through our family,
we probably won’t have the opportunity to adopt any of the children who come through our home.
And yet, today she asked something about her “brothers and sisters”. My civilized child welfare instincts wanted to correct her and explain again that they won’t be “brothers and sisters, because we are not adopting them…” But, the Spirit checked my heart and mind and basically whispered, “she get’s it…..she understands that every child who enters this house is her brother and sister.” And, then I got it. We are all living, breathing children of the King and because of that we are intertwined as “brothers and sisters”.
Her heart is pure, it hasn’t been ‘civilized’ yet. It loves, believes, and takes risks as it should. In fact, her heart is probably closer to the Kingdom than my own and for that I am so thankful.
Father, may your Kingdom come right here in our home and may we embrace all who enter as our brothers and sisters in Christ.