To The Glory Of God-
"My Foster Story" - Lorie Williams
Some of you may know me personally, and therefore know that my family and I began a journey to adopt through the foster care system a little less than 2 years ago. To say this has been a long tough season is a dramatic understatement. But to say it was all terrible would be vastly misguided and wouldn't take into consideration all the wonderful and glorious blessings the Lord has given us along the way.
We brought home our beautiful baby boy about 10 months ago and I am positive that no amount of classes could have adequately prepared us for what we would experience physically, emotionally and spiritually through this process. Of course, even having biological children has it's challenges and definitely changes your life forever. However, foster care is a beast of its own and requires lots of time, an insurmountable amount of patience and strength beyond compare. I don't claim to have any of that on my own and it remains a daily struggle to stay grounded, but I have learned that the days I continually refocus my thoughts on the Lord, are always my better days. On the days I can "hold every thought captive", I experience more of God's glory and grace than on days I don't.
There are days I worry about what the future may hold for him, and for us as a family too. Will he be ours forever? Will he go back to his biological family? Will me, my husband and my biological daughter be heartbroken by the possible outcome? Will he be healthy, happy, safe and feel loved even if he isn't with us? Will he be hurt by the trauma of his birth story? Have we shown him the love of Christ and will he remember? And those are only a short list of the worries I encounter. Honestly, I probably worry about things on most days. On those days, I have to hit pause and I remind myself of Matthew 6:34, "Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself..." I have no control over most all those things, but I know, the one true sovereign God who is in complete control of each and every circumstance. If I can just focus on Him...
After every court date and visitation, I find myself wondering if this process will last forever. Questions linger in my heart about why God allows certain things to happen and others not to and even why some of my most diligent heartfelt prayers seem to go unanswered. On those days I find solace in Isaiah 55:8, "'For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways your ways,'declares the Lord.'As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than you ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.'" Even though I think I know how things should go, God knows better. His plan is perfect because He sees the entire puzzle and how each piece fits perfectly together, and we simply can't. Knowing that He is a good and loving Father further helps me in knowing that His plan is perfect and in perfect time. If I can just focus on Him...
In every questioning and uncertain moment, the most productive, helpful, comforting thing I can do is remind myself of God's promises and His truths. Preach to myself, God's Word. I quiet my mind and my heart with the promises of His love, His goodness, His faithfulness, His help, His grace and His mercy. He is sovereign and righteous, pure and strong, loving and constant. And when no word can calm my spirit, again I fall at His feet knowing He hides me in His wings and loves me like no other ever can. I call on Him to light my way and guide my path, knowing that He has never left me, not for one minute. Not one second was I ever alone. If I can just focus on him...
This journey has been tough and long and it isn't over yet, but it is only momentary in the spectrum of all eternity. God has called us to these 2 beautiful souls, my children. He called us to lead them, love them, discipline and disciple them and to shepherd their hearts to know and love Him with all they are. In time, they will have a life and struggles of their own and my prayer is that I have lived up to my call by focusing on loving the one to lead and light my way and that in the process I have taught them how to do the same.
Here are just a few verses that help lift me up and keep my focus on the Lord.
* Psalm 143:8 "Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul."
* 2 Corinthians 4:16-17 "Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all."
* Proverbs 19:21 "Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails."
* Psalm 34:8 "Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!
* Psalm 9:10 "And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.
* Romans 8:38 "For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord."