Dear sweet friend of mine,
I hear it in your voice-a longing to bring babies home, a desire to love the fatherless and unwanted. You are eager to move and excited to take your first steps on this road less traveled. I see it in your eyes-a passion to run fearlessly into the pain and suffering of orphans. I know the ache of your heart as you wait and pray and dream of what life will look like when you are found in the beauty of your calling. There are roadblocks and speed bumps that pop up in a myriad of ways. Your heart is heavy and your spirit is burdened but you can’t move. You want to. But you’re stuck.
Maybe its your husband. He has NO desire to bring another child into your home. He can barely manage the ones you have. Or maybe he isn’t so cold. He’s just lukewarm. He’s not opposed but he certainly isn’t on board with your plans of growing your family through foster care. That’s the husband I knew. I used to feel like we would never see eye to eye on this particular topic. What you see in my life now is the fruit of many prayers.
God is much better at softening your husband’s heart to foster care and adoption than you. So start whispering your deepest desires to a Creator that cares and sees and knows. Let him do the calling.
It will be a beautiful thing when you look back and see with clarity the way your husband changed and grew and moved. But what if he doesn’t? What if he never gets it? What if you never see things the same?
Pray anyway. Love him and serve him. Ask God to reveal places you can serve that may look different than the journey in your vision. Proverbs 16:3, “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans“. You can still serve God and care for orphans right now but you have to be willing to do it in a different way…for now.
sidenote: Maybe you’re single. You don’t see marriage on the horizon but your desire to love is great. I need to be honest, having a husband to relieve and carry this burden of brokenness is a great blessing and it certainly makes the miserable moments more bearable. But you CAN do this without a husband.
Maybe the wait for a water test is holding up your home study. Insert eye roll. My list of annoyances that slammed the breaks on our licensing process are endless. I was dying to finish it all but at every turn there was one more paper to sign and one more background to check and one more copy of an insurance card to make. Don’t even get me started on the temperature of our fridge. Yes, they check that.
You may be in the wait for a placement. Whether its your first or your fiftieth, the wait can bring emotions on repeat. Your cellphone is wedged between your hip and your yoga pants (or is that just me?) and every ring makes your heart beat a little faster. You check your text messages every 30 seconds just in case the social worker couldn’t reach you by phone. And sometimes you text her just to “check in” because, well, you never know.
There will always be something to wait on.
In this mess, I’ve waited on paperwork and phone calls, court dates and psych evals, unsupervised visits and reunifications. I’ve waited on OT, PT and speech appointments, neurology checkups and apnea monitors. I’ve waited for the health department and the state and the other state. I am horrible at the waiting. I’m always ready for the next step to be made clear so I can act.
But with all this waiting, I have found that God is there in the stillness and the quiet. He is present in the doldrums, when the seas seem to be stagnant and unmoved. He is still powerful and aware. He doesn’t need me to rush things along. This doesn’t mean I can’t be a loud voice of advocacy for my kids or persistent in my efforts to make things happen, it just means that I can trust him even when I can’t see the timeline.
He knows your longings and I can assure you those deep desires to care for the abandoned and abused only come from him because he is love. You can be used in mighty ways right where you are. Let him write your story. Rest in the wait because the wait is a beautiful place to hear and see and know him.
And what happens in the wait will reveal his character in you…and his character is the very thing that will draw others to know him so you can change the world one baby, one family and one “the wait is over” at a time.