On my mind

"The question will never be whether you should care for orphans. The question is how you will care for them... "
-Jason Kovacs

[You can read the article in it's entirety here].

My sister and her husband got their foster care license this past week. On the day they received word that they were officially licensed, they received three calls: will you take this child? this baby? this sibling set?

In their home for the next few days, a little girl (4) and a little boy (2). Pulled from their home due to abuse/neglect. Stayed the first night with one family, and then arrived at my sisters' house. They came at night, around bedtime, with nothing. No jammies, no blankets, no little stuffed animals from their own beds, nothing of their own. They have bruises all over their little bodies.

Oh, my heart aches for the orphans. Ella's, too. When I told them over breakfast about these two little ones staying with their cousins, Ella spent the next half-hour trying to figure out room schematics in our house so that we could be able to take in some more foster children. She concluded: "There are too many rules!" (Because of my responses: "No, honey- they can't sleep in your bed. Or on the couch, or even on the floor.")

Our church has been studying the book of Acts, and the series is entitled, "The Church Has Left the Building." (Ie: are we taking the gospel outside the doors of the church? In our workplaces, in our extended families, in the community and world at large?)

Increasingly I am certain that this is one area where the church needs to "get out of the building", and step up to meet the needs in our communities. How great would it be if we rose up as a Church and took in all of these orphans? I have this little fantasy in my mind where social workers all over the country are circled up in the state offices, chatting at the coffee maker, talking about all of the foster families from that Assemblies of God church, over there, and the Presbyterian church down the street, and the Reformed church across town. And how they can rest a little easier, now, what with these wonderful families responding to the need.

Maybe someday.

In the meantime, we pray here at our house for the orphans. Specifically for this one, this baby girl we got to love for one short month of her life.

How we hope to be able to foster again, someday!

I am so, so proud of you, Stef (if you're reading this), and Dan-- for doing this. And for those of you others who are also fostering or in the process of getting licensed. And those of you who have adopted or are in the process of adopting. I love your hearts. And I commend you for obeying God's word.

19 comments:

  1. Wow.
    That is so cool that Dan and Stefany are doing that.
    And so sad that it needs to be done. So sad.

    Good post Stacy. You are right the church needs to be the one's who meet the needs of these kids.

    And I am remembering to pray for "baby" today too.
    Love you!

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  2. Please keep praying for my husband's heart to agree with yours (and mine!) about fostering. He's all about the concept. He just doesn't think he has the energy :-)

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  3. Thanks for sharing that link. Great article. Blessings!
    Rebeca

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  4. I love hearing about these things although my heart aches for those poor children. And there are so many just like them - all around us. How pleasing it must be for you to see your daughter developing a heart of compassion. Love to you.

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  5. Stacy, this one cuts straight through all the hard edges of my heart, right to that place that KNOWS that taking care of orphans is the right thing to do.

    An important post, thanks for the reminder.

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  6. I was just over at this site yesterday:

    www.helponechild.org

    In San Mateo County, CA they have a campaign going to raise up just ONE family from each Christian church (500) in their county... just ONE, to adopt a child from foster care. If they do there will be NO waiting children left in their foster care system. The statistic should hold pretty true nationwide. The other amazing statistic I heard recently was that if just 7% of Christian families adopted just ONE child, there would be no more waiting children in the WORLD! It amazes me how much potential we as the church have to affect these children, our world, and the Kingdom and how evidently we are not doing that little bit it requires.

    Blessings to you and your FORMER orphans, and to your sister who is filling the need for a safe loving interim home for these little ones.

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  7. Beautiful, my friend. Your words reignite that desire in me to get our license!

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  8. Stacy, this post is very touching. I have no idea how to link from one blog to another.. (not so technical, me) :) Can I have your permission to copy and paste this post to my blog?? I SO AGREE that more people need to do this. When I was interviewed by the social worker, and asked why do you want to be a foster parent, my answer was WHY shouldnt I be??? Why arent more people doing it?! Those that can should! Those that think they cant, CAN. Everyone has love to give. Anway, that is my tangent for the day :)
    Love ya
    Sara

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  9. Great post, Stacy. I'm right with you on how much I wish we could foster again. Obviously not right now, because 1) we don't have the space and 2) your hands are already full right now. But I love your heart. I share it and I hope someday we can have the space to care for the orphans again (through adoption and fostering).

    And in regards to Beth's comment: I will pray for your husband to be on board with fostering. And... of course he doesn't have the energy; caring for foster children is exhausting (I think more than even caring for your own, because you don't know them -- you don't have a history to draw upon in relating to them.) But caring for foster children is not our work we do with our own energies. Looking after orphans (even temporary ones) is the work of God, and He will supply enough energy to your husband so that he can love and care for you, your kids and those you foster. I'm pretty sure about that. Hope that encourages.

    - Mark

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  10. Hi Stacy :) Thank you for posting on this topic! My heart is still busy at work on this from the last time you wrote about it. Jamie and I are praying about what the Father would have us do!

    Please tell Stef and Dan we will be lifting them up :)

    And Mark... what a wonderful encouragement your comments are. I appreciate your willingness to share with us about your heart.

    Love to both of you, Q

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  11. I can't tell you how close to my heart this post is today. I literally just got off a 2 hour conversation with my mom where we were saying the same things - the CHURCH needs to "get out and LIVE IT" in regards to these orphans.

    We are getting licensed this month and God has been working mightily "behind the scenes" you could say. I will fill you in via email, okay?

    Prayers for "baby" today.

    Love ya!

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  12. I am so with you. SO with you. Wonderfully put, with a sweet spirit that you always seem to post with. Thanks for that.

    (FYI: I would love to be a foster parent...just need a house first. This apartment won't work. ugh)

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  13. I just spoke to my husband about this again the other day. I keep praying.

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  14. This is a very touching post. Thanks for the encouragement to pray about this!

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  15. Hey sweet lady!

    Just wanted to let you know that I'm still here. silently reading.

    And tonight. My husband will be reading this post as well.

    It stirred my heart once more for children in dire need of real love. I always think of those abused children in terms of MINE. "What if Charis had been born to someone else? Someone who beat her? What would I do then?"

    THAT always brings it closer to home for me. and makes me want to step out of my comfort zone to provide love for a child that could have been my own...

    Would you email me the "rules" about fostering? Because from the sounds of it, we don't have the room at the time. Just curious...

    GvnJCmyALL@aol.com

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  16. Oh my goodness, what a beautiful dream! It would be amazing if we all get together and take care of these children that need so much love and attention.

    Especially, if the ones doing the caring happen to love the Lord too...

    Thank you for sharing, and you should be proud of your sister, I am here too. It takes a great deal of courage to open yourself up and follow the prompting of the Holy Spirit without questions.

    blessings,

    mari

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  17. oh Stacy,
    Our hearts are beating right alongside yours today. We are planning to sell our home so we can be licensed to foster and adopt in a bigger place. We dream of being able to BE the church to a hurting world.

    I read something recently that struck a big chord...it basically said we if we are going to be passionate about being pro-life then we had better be ready to adopt some babies and love some mothers.

    It continues to amaze me that of all the doctrinal issues and disputes that could arise in the early church, Paul continues to say the most important thing is to care for the poor, the widows and orphans. Jesus trusts us to be his hands and his feet...thankyou for being a great guide for us as we walk this path!

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  18. Did you know that if every church in the US would take in only one foster child there would be no kids awaiting permenant homes? Convicting isn't it?

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  19. i so agree with you, stacy!

    your story reminded me so much of our fostering days and the little parade of kids who came through our door...some of them stir my heart still, 15 years later.

    i don't think there is anything closer to the heart of what Christ is all about than caring for orphans in this way.

    bless you, dear heart.

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