Saturday, August 29, 2009

I am humbled, shameful, but blessed!

If you haven't read this blog post by Katie, go here now, and read the one from Aug. 26th, 2009 which as of today is at the top of the page.

If you think that the things we have done, like adopting from russia, then china, and now doing foster care are noble acts, or something Godly, or saintly, I will tell you, in comparison to what Katie is doing in Africa, day after day, there is no comparison. Yes, our adoption from russia was rough, he was a tough street kid, a boy abused, used, and deeply damaged. Yes, we spent quite a few years in turmoil, and it was hard, very hard, scary, full of unimaginable suffering that brought me to my knees more times than I can count. But, in those times on my knees, I came to know some of what the suffering of Jesus was like, and I was challenged to love when our child seemed so unlovable, much like God and us. And I understood God's love for me just a little more. Our China adoption was simple in comparison, but still a roller coaster ride at times, wondering if we made the right decision in turning down our first two referrals, and then accepting the third. Then realizing when we gave it all to God, and allowed Him to work things out, He did. Our daughter needed a family, but we needed her too, and she has been such a blessing. Foster care so far has been so rewarding. So many people look at us now, and say we have our hands full-I guess to many people, 3 young ones is a handful, because with 2, I never got that comment. But, we have been so blessed. After reading Katie's latest post, and thinking about all of the ones we turned down, I am shameful, but God in His grace, still allowed us the opportunity to be foster parents, and for that, I am so thankful. I have heard so many people say they wanted to do foster care, but decided they just couldn't do it, because they could not bare the thought of having to give the child back at some point and having their hearts broken. This idea held us back at one point too, but, as I thought and prayed about it more, I realized it's not about us...and our's about the child, and in taking in a child who needs a home when theirs is no longer a safe place for them, we are doing something that Jesus would do, and as a christian, I cannot stand by and know there is a need in my community that I am aware of, and do nothing. How could I sit back and tell God I was just too busy, or my life is perfect the way it is? For us, it is also about caring for one of God's precious little children, ministering to them, by loving, caring, and holding them close as though they were our own, and having the opportunity to pray over them, which I am so thrilled to be able to do! In looking at it this way, foster care has really been a ministry, one in which we are able to serve God through-by loving a sweet little baby-His creation! Although I wasn't looking for payoffs of any kind, I am being blessed beyond measure! Having a little baby in the house who coos, smiles, and is absolutely the most cute, and cuddly little thing ever has been such a blessing...far beyond what I expected! But, again, it is not much in comparison to what Katie is doing in Africa. She is 20, mothering 13 orphans, and caring for hundreds more. What I am doing is so small in comparison. When she sees a need, she does all she can to meet it. She is living in a place of poverty. I have my comfy little home, warm bed, air conditioning, all the food I want. Her place is not what most of us would call all the comforts of home. But, her home is filled with love, and that is most important. She brings home small children, and babies, and nurses them to life, takes them to Dr's and hospitals, when nobody else will. She takes care of so many, when nobody else seems to care. She is the hands, feet, and heart of Jesus. But most of all, she has taken God's word-BELIEVED it, and did not just set her Bible up on a shelf after church on Sunday, but she followed God's word, His leading, and daily carries out what we as christians are called to do. I wanted to summarize a little of what she talked about. She was beginning to feel anger in taking care of all of these needs. The needs are HUGE, and she is just ONE, trying to do so much. She talks about the 147 million orphans in the world, and other children in the world that are being used as sex slaves, etc. She states that there are 2.1 BILLION christians world wide, and if only 8% of these christians would care for just one child, ALL would be taken care of!!! That just blows my mind! Only 8% could take care of all!?! I can relate to her anger and her feelings that we as christians are failing. What are all the christians doing? I really hope they are not living in multi million dollar homes, buying vacation properties, and sending their one child off to boarding schools, or maybe most of them are just average people, but they don't believe they have the means to do something like this...that would mean they are not getting into God's word, allowing His truth and message to penetrate their hearts and souls...because when we are open to His plan, His truth, and His message, He shows us the way, and it changes us...and we, as well as a little orphan child from a land far away, or possibly in our own neighborhood, are never the same...

I challenge you to read this latest blog post of hers, and then listen to your heart, and ask, What is it I can do? Where is it I can help? I promise you, you will be richly blessed!!!


Calico Sky said...

I read her post, then came here and you were talking about it too. I haven't stopped crying since hearing she has little Michael again (the boy with the foot injuries).

Yesterday in prayer I said "how hard is it really Lord to be in a comfortable home and adopt". I think the reality is, we all have it *so* easy in comparison, but we lose that comparison because we look around us and think we have a more difficult route than most.

Perspective is everything isn't it?

Lori Ann said...

I am speechless, with tears rolling. Thank you for passing this along, Michelle. I want you to know that as I have read your blog over the past year and a half, you have inspired me to do more and think more about the things I feel passionate about, which happen to be the same things you are passionate about. I'm sure I'm not the only one you have touched. Just wanted you to know.

Lori Ann (China buddy)

Dawn said...

You have a beautiful heart Michelle. I pray everyone would look around the world and see the needs and do their part.
Thanks for posting this blog and for sharing.

Anonymous said...

I love her blog. and yes, you are right. It is amazing what she is doing.

People often make us out to be hereos. I always think to myself... BIG DEAL. We live in the USA in our comfy home with a comfy life. I don't feel like we have done anything too great.

scrappy quilter said...

Beautiful, beautiful post. I'm off to read the link. As an adoptive mom of 3 kids with special needs and having fostered for 6 years, I can understand where you are coming from. Wonderful heartfelt words.