Today over at No Greater Joy Mom, Adeye is highlighting blogs from anyone that has adopted or fostered a child. There has been a lot of people that have come against and attacked families that foster and adopt children. I know this might come as a shock to some of you but truly, it is the raw truth. Trust me… I have seen how precious, adoption and fostering is to God’s heart first hand, how He does miracles on behalf of these children and families. Our own included... and how much satan hates it. I have seen time and time again peoples closest family, friends and “anonymous” strangers attack and discourage. It hurts deeply but is just a sad truth that many families, that are called to this life, as a ministry, face. I hear it over and over again and have lived it myself. We have had countless family members and friends say the worst things and shun us because of the children taken into our home. Even worse, to shun one particular child, thru no fault of his own, that we adopted, because his mom was HIV positive. But on the other side, we have had some family members and friends rally around us in support no matter who we take in. They love and hug each child no matter what their past, present or prognosis. They kiss and hug their happy faces even if they drool! We have had total strangers pray for us fervently and love us as if they were our family and they have become cherished friends. Now that is the love of God here on the earth! Adeye would like to have blog owners share today, as an encouragement…What Great Things God has Done! For He Has Done Great Things!
I will gladly and whole heartedly join her today, in sharing that God is an awesome God and has truly done great things in our family and life, by granting us the privilege of raising these children in our home!
God has taken this selfish woman, (myself) :) who used to live for her own gain and desires and transformed her and her life into something that has eternal value. He took the mess I made of my life, before serving Him, and opened my eyes to His plan for my life. A plan that would make an eternal difference for many, by living my life for Him, just as He gave His very life for me. To daily sacrifice my wants and what I selfishly think I need by doing daily for others. In Gods Word it says that if we do something for the least of these my brethren, its as if you are doing it for Christ Himself. Wow! I don’t want my life to be for nothing. I want to have lived and made as much of a difference for the Lord as I can. I want to serve Christ Himself and for me that is by serving the children He has asked Tim and I too adopt.
I am still learning. I am still growing. I still fall and fail. I am so human. I make so many mistakes. I feel weak at times, frail, broken and humbled to the core. I feel inadequate. I get DISCOURAGED, a lot and need someone, anyone to give me a word of encouragement. If no person does.,..God always does and that is all I need to pick myself up off the ground and take it one day at a time once again. I can do all things thru Christ who strengthens me!
Tim and I are a team put together by God. I believe that with my whole heart. His love for the children that need homes in this world runs deep. He is a wonderful dad and is totally hands on. Tim does not cry easily but I have seen him cry more times over hurting children than I can count, or crying in prayer over our children before surgery and when sick. When God brought Tim and I into the service of fostering and adopting, it changed our lives forever for the better because it changed us. The things we saw and went thru shaped us into more godly people. It stripped away frivolous and made us see how serious life is for so many and what is most important.
We got a front row seat to miracles daily. When I say daily I mean it. We saw hurt children heal. We saw scared children learn to trust. We saw many come to salvation. We saw doctors prognosis shot down time and time again. We saw broken bodies healed or miracle recovery times from surgeries.
The more children we took in and wondered how to pay the bills the more God provided. The more the kids grew the more clothing was donated or we found at thrift stores in their sizes. We might not have every new gadget on the market or go on fancy vacations but we have always had a roof over our heads, a comfortable home and good food on the table. We have always had nice clothing to wear and a vehicle to get our large family around in. God IS Faithful!
The things we have went thru. And YES there has been many tears cried. Many hard times and many hard days. Our days are fuller and more challenging than the average family. So daily life is just harder and many things are more time consuming…those times made us pray more, we studied Gods Word more for comfort and direction. We learned to stay in constant communication with God just to get thru each moment at times. We grew closer and closer to God. He answered and directed always.
Many of our blogs seem always showing the good because life is so good! I can only speak for my own but I try to show honesty in all things and be open about health issues and daily life. To show how serious our life is and how serious the kids health issues are…but to show we live and are blessed in spite of it all, by the grace of God. I mean I could dwell on all the hard stuff because to be honest, life raising so many children with special needs can be very hard. Very hard. But the part that is hard is the physical/emotional part. The lifting a 120 pound son to change his diaper. The unexpected run to the ER in the middle of the night for breathing troubles. The balancing what to do with the other kids while running to the ER with above said child. The unexpected surgery, the tantrums the bad behavior. The melt downs the days that all the above happens on the same day or even in the same evening. That is the hard part. Those are the hardest times we need peoples prayers and encouragement. Those are the storms of fostering and adoption. But they are not every moment of every day and equally, if not more often, are the hugs and love and games and being silly and doing fun home schooling together. The first steps that we never thought we’d see. The first word when we were told they would never speak. The eye contact from one with autism and first joke they ever told and laughed at hysterically. We choose to focus on the wonderful part of the children and let the hard part go. Only God can carry that part. I know I can’t. With out Him helping me thru all that worldly hard stuff I would be a mess. With out all the prayers of those who truly love us it would be so much harder. Just knowing people out there love and support what God has called you to do brings more strength than you know!
God has done so many wonderful things over the years. We have seen a child who should not be able to walk, now walking, running and dancing. A child who should never talk, now talking with paralyzed vocal cords! A child that is supposed to be having seizures because of so many brain bleeds, seizure free. A child that should have HIV, HIV free! A child that should be on daily meds for emotions and behavior, med free. A child that we told might not make it, alive and well. So many times that several of our children were so very ill and recovered beautifully by the grace of God. I could go on and on.
These are the benefits and blessings of living this life.
These children and their clean, happy, fed smiling faces, that call me mommy and Tim daddy, are the reason to do what Tim and I do.
Our children love us and we cherish them every day.
They have a forever family.
They know the love of the Lord at our hands and God asked us to and we said yes.
God is so good. Run to what He has called you to do and you will never regret it. He will make you able to do above and beyond what you ever thought you could do. And because you know you could never have done it alone, all the glory is His and you see the beauty and miracle in it all. Front row seat and all!
I want to thank all the families today who foster and adopt children. I want to thank the people who come up along side these families and give support. Whether it be financial, friendship, daily help or words of encouragement. You will never know how much even the smallest gesture means to a busy family that is balancing so many things.
I can’t tell you how many people I have met in the last six months worldwide, that I love dearly and receive encouragement from often. That is what we need. These are just a fraction of the great things God has done!
James 1:27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.
May the Lord God Almighty equip you daily to do above and beyond all He asks you to do! May He bring people alongside you in your life to encourage and uplift you! May He abundantly bless you for being faithful to Him just as He is faithful to all of us!