I talk about in the book that I believe it reflects the heart of God when we meet the needs of orphans. We adopt the heart of God. For some reason, many of us feel compassion towards children who are at risk or orphaned, but we do not do anything about it. I know for me it was because I did not think that I was cut out to adopt a child, especially a foster child. I even gave my best spiritual twist by saying that I did not “feel called” to do that. What a cop-out!
I do agree that not everyone is cut out or called to adopt, but as I write in the book, there are so many other ways to help meet the needs of orphans. For several years, along with several others in a small group, I spent time with some boys at a local children’s home. From time to time, we would take dinner out to the group home and hang out for a while. Or, we would take the boys shopping for back to school clothes. We also gave gift certificates to the host parents so that they could go out to eat or watch a movie. None of us adopted any of these boys, even though some of us considered it. But, we provided support to those who cared for them every day.
Supporting those who are fostering or adopting children is a huge way to care for these children. Foster parents often are dealing with children who are emotionally and psychologically challenged because of the things they have gone through. All parents know that parenting is difficult, and all need breaks from time to time. Kick it up a few notches for foster parents. Not only are they dealing with children that are hurting, they also have to arrange their schedules for parent visits, CPS visits, etc. On top of that, there is the emotional tug of war involved with getting attached to children who most likely will be with them for a short period of time.
During the time that we were fostering, we were incredibly blessed by the support of those around us. Many gave us emotional support, others babysat for us so my wife and I could go on a date. A foster family can not pick up the phone and just call anyone to babysit. The babysitter has to be pre-screened with a background check. As the length of time needed for babysitting increases, so does the requirements of the babysitter.
Tomorrow, we are having a big adoption celebration! Many times as we were fostering our little guy, our friends would tell us that we would definitely have to have a big party if an adoption ever did happen. So here we are, about to have a big celebration.
It is overwhelming how many want to make sure that we have what we need as we transition to having our own son. We appreciate the support. At the same time, I desire to “pay it forward”. I have encouraged people who are coming to donate to an adoption fund, such as, the Abba Fund. www.abbafund.org
This is another way to support families who are caring for orphans. Many families desire to adopt, but they do not have the financial means to do so. Abba Fund helps them by providing interest free loans. Giving to a fund such as this one provides the monies for these loans.
So, will you ask God how you can support those who are fostering and adopting? I hope you will just as many have supported us.