On Monday, October 25th we became a family of seven. We added a beautiful, four-day old infant to our already crazy house. We instantly fell in love and have spent the last two weeks trying to get our bearings, remembering what it’s like to have a newborn in the home.
Many unknowns come with being a foster parent as you often don’t get a lot of information when a new placement comes to your door. When you agree to be a foster parent, you agree to being in the dark … a lot.
What I’ve learned over the years, however, is people just don’t understand this aspect. In general, people don’t understand foster care nor do I expect them to, but I’ve found myself saying, “I don’t know” more often than I care to admit.
What’s her story? … I don’t know.
How long are you going to have her? … I don’t know.
Are you going to adopt her? … I don’t know.
I have to answer a lot of questions with “I don’t know” because I genuinely don’t know. I am in this moment doing my best to make this little lady feel safe and loved.
Although there are a lot of things I do not know, there are more that I do know.
I know that God has a perfect plan for this sweet girl.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. – Jeremiah 29:11
I know that God is with us, and her, every day even in the unknown and the scary.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.
– Joshua 1:9
I know that we were created to be in relationship with others and together, bio parents and us, can be a beneficial team for this child.
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up.
– Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
I know that although there is a lot I don’t know, there is a God that does know and I can count on him. As we approach Thanksgiving and week three with this perfect, precious bundle of pink, I am thankful for a God who holds the answers so I don’t have to. I am thankful for a God who continues to provide even when I’m not sure how and a God who believes in me, trusts me, and loves me enough to allow me the privilege of being the first person this tiny miracle bonds with.
And a privilege it is! A scary, difficult at times, but beautiful privilege to lay a foundation of security and love. A privilege to instill the knowledge that her needs will be met and she can count on the people around her. A privilege to truly be the selfless, sacrificial hands and feet of Jesus Christ.
Then he put a little child among them. Taking the child in his arms, he said to them, 37 “Anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes not only me but also my Father who sent me.”
– Mark 9: 36-37
Needless to say, our life has been flip-turned upside down the last couple of weeks and honestly, I wouldn’t change it for the world. I am soaking up the sleepless nights and daytime cuddles, the stinky diapers and manly burps. I’m soaking them up because I don’t know how long they’ll last, but I do know that right now, God intended them just for me.
Wow, wow, wow, wow. What a beautiful expression of something God is doing through your family…that rainy, gray day so many years ago when we met at your home fills me with joy knowing how selflessly you all are pursuing being God’s hands extended. Wow…