We hear your prayers and encouragement.
Tonight was the annual Lifeline Banquet. I want to reflect more on it later, but for the moment, I wanted to give a one-day snapshot of God's mercy in our lives.
When we attended our first Lifeline banquet four years ago, there was no foster care program. We went as someones guest, and as tears flowed down both our faces, we pumped our fists in the air and cried out that we would answer the call to adopt.
I. love. adoption.
I still hang a stocking each Christmas for the child we believe God gave us a vision for that night.
But four years later, too many twists and turns to count have led two daughters to be adopted from our home, one son reunified with his birth family, and three more daughters we're working hard for that goal to take place (More on our new Cinderella later).
The last two banquets I've honestly felt sorry for myself. Again, I know these are lies from the Lie Man himself, but when I watched the parade of families and heard the adoption stories, I longed for the "finished product" (which I know is not a reality. I have too many incredible adoptive friends to know that). But, I longed for a child who would never forget my name. I longed for the family picture of six, not the family pictures of five, with six other members who can't be photographed.
So tonight, Jamie and I loaded up on prayer because it's been two weeks from the dark side.
And as tears started to flow within the first five minutes, I heard God whisper,
Look what you would have missed today if I had not called you to foster care...
(completely removing the aspect of His ministry through us)
I would have missed in the last 24 (maybe 48) hours....
- A precious friend who texted me the song "Mighty to Save," told me she was crying out for me for no reason.
- A senior high boy who was committed to sponsor a child, and though he couldn't maybe afford the best, he wants to give him the best. So he's clearing out his fresh ipod, and loading it with songs his sponsored kid says are his favorite.
- Two different babysitters who have dropped everything in the last week, to help us get a groove again, procrastinating on their projects and finding subs for their "real" jobs and loving my kids with beauty.
- A text from one of my favorite college gal's on earth saying she will not stop praying for me, or for Little J.
- An email from a family saying God has put it on their hearts to cover remaining Christmas costs for any child that comes into care late into December
- A Treasure who listened long and well to my eruptive tears
- A text from a senior high gal saying she is praying for us every day, and to remember that "we bear on our body the marks of Jesus." - Galatians 6:17
- An email from a precious friend I "discipled" (a.k.a. she discipled me) listing songs of hope
- Friends who have stocked our freezer in the last week with food and our pantry with paper products. For a momma who doesn't cook, this is heaven.
- A bag full of SANTA COKES and kettle chips - sublime.
- A Husband who leads me in this battle
- Friends at work who covered my classes and carpools without giving me a second to disagree when we've been sick this last week.
- A soul friend who whispered in my ear every two seconds at the banquet that each thing said was just like Jesus in us.
- Fellow foster mommas to weep with, rejoice with, be angry with, and who are sacrificing their weekends to make a weekend away for us happen this week. Don't call or text me :)
- An enormous Lifeline family who knows our hearts well, and simply hugs and delights in us.
This is just the last day or so.
I didn't touch on the reality that I'm following a God that has led us to be part of "redeeming the years the locusts have eaten," or "being restorers of streets with dwellings," or that I really do serve a God who transforms lives.
I'm a charismatic Presbyterian :) Tonight, God gave me a vision of Him pressing down on us with his thumbs, to the point we disappeared, and instead, His fingers reached far out for the Hope of His Kingdom to all who are pouring into us.
We are just one orphan care family - just one family acting in obedience.
No, He has not called us all to foster, or adopt, or do overseas or inner city missions, but He has commanded us to care for the body that is. We can all do one thing. Today, thank you to my precious friends who answered that call. It changed my life today - truly. My vision of my Savior rejoicing over me has been crystallized through your sacrifice.
I am loved well.