I've always had a love for foster care and adoption. I can remember being in my adolescence and dreaming about my life as an adult. My dream was to have a large ranch on the beach. And that large ranch would be used to house girls suffering and recovering from eating disorders. Or to house children who didn't have families. At that time, I didn't fully grasp the concept of foster care and adoption, but I still had a heart for it. God was placing dreams and visions and love for the marginalized and the forgotten; I just didn't realize it.
My heart has been swelling lately. I didn't think I would be ready for kids until I was at least 30. And I never knew if I would have a longing to hold a baby. I kind of thought I would always want to care for older children - children who were already potty trained. Because honestly? How do you even teach a child to use the toilet? I don't even know how I taught our dogs to go to the bathroom outside.
But God knew. He always knows. It's a bit annoying.
He knew that my heart would change. He probably cringed every time I said I would never want children. He also knew I would meet my husband, my perfect help mate who compliments me. He knew that things would come together in a timing that I will never fully comprehend.
I honestly feel an ache in my soul when I think about fostering and adopting. It brings tears to my eyes (and I'm not one to cry easily). It makes me feel like I will have a true and definable purpose. Almost like I was created to care for the forgotten and the marginalized.
Friends of ours are at the very end of being approved as foster parents, and they blessed us by asking if we would be willing to be approved as their alternate caregiver (someone who can care for the children in their home should the need arise). I didn't even ask Justin for his opinion; I simply said yes. It wasn't because I don't value his opinion. I do. But I knew what his answer would be.
But it wasn't our story. We play a part in it, but it's God's story. His story of fostering and adoption. His love for the least of these.
That day was a moment for me. It was as though God broke open the entire world and crashed into my living room to look directly in my face and say this is what you and Justin are created for.
When it's time, when we open up our home, we will love every single child with fierceness and joy. We will not replace their families, but they will become a part of our family. And we will love them for the rest of time.
While this has all been going on (God ruining our lives that is), I've been slowly making my way through the book 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess. It's all hit me. How much I consume and waste. How much I have and yet think I need more. And while I'm still not perfect (Target and JC Penney can attest to that), I'm realizing just how much I have that I don't need.
It's not just stuff, though. Stuff is something I need less of, but what has truly gripped me about the book is just how much the CHURCH has. Last night, I nestled into our bed with my Kindle and resumed reading when this passage jumped out at me: "If the modern church held to its biblical definition, we would become the answer to all that ails society."
That truth is offensive. But it is true. We as the modern church have so much, too much, and we continue to want more and consume more. But we aren't giving back. We aren't taking care of the least of these the way the Bible calls us to.
I have spent so much time lost in my faith. I struggle with knowing what to share and how to share it. I struggle with loving on people without mentioning the gospel because people need to be loved more instead of talked to about Christ. I've felt lost in churches. Confused by what we are or aren't doing as Christians to serve.
When I started this blog, I didn't know what I was doing with it. I didn't really know what I was doing with my life. IT morphed into more of a weight loss blog, and while I still plan to write on that topic (once I'm able to exercise again!), I feel like God is leading me to document my faith and the works He is doing.
I'm not sure where this all will take us or this blog. I have dreams that God is placing on my heart right now - dreams that He is also placing on my husband's heart. And we are praying over those and seeking His guidance. I'll share when I can.
I'm so glad He's ruining our lives. I'm so glad I'm letting Him ruin my life. Because for the first time in a while, I feel like I have purpose. I feel like I am actually walking in the light.