Today I made up a bed in my home for a child I've never met.
I tried to pick sheets I think she'll like, based on absolutely nothing, since I have no information about her other than her name and age. While I put the lime green and blue striped sheets on the bed I prayed for this little girl who will be staying with us for a few days. I prayed that she would feel safe in our home. I prayed for her mom, that she would be able to be with her daughter again soon. I prayed for her siblings.
I hope those of you who know us noticed that I wrote "little girl" and did a double take. The Crazy House, full of boys, is welcoming a girl into our house. It's not even the first time this month we've welcomed a girl into the crazy.
I've said a lot of things to God in my life. I've told Him I can't (or won't) do a lot of things. I said I wouldn't get married. I said I wouldn't move back to Michigan. I said I wouldn't have babies or girls in my house. After all that, and more, I really believe God has a sense of humor, and I laugh at myself a lot these days. Especially when I'm in the store buying baby food and little girls' clothes.
It's one thing to say you can't welcome a child into your home when it's a hypothetical question, when the need isn't right in front of you. It's an entirely different feeling when that child has a name and needs a place to go. I've found that now, when the crazies are doing so great, and if there are no great safety concerns, I am compelled to say yes a lot more.
Please understand, I don't say yes because I'm full of energy or feel I am super prepared to parent all. the. children. I say yes because I believe God has called me to this, to care for His little image-bearers, and they aren't all boys between the ages of four and 12.
I share this because I want you to know that I struggle with where God is calling me sometimes, but I know He equips us to do His work. So many people have told me they just couldn't foster, because they couldn't love a child and then let go. But that is all parenting, right? We love them while they are in our home and let them go when they leave. In foster care, the timeline is just accelerated.
It's so easy to say no to a hypothetical, but these kids aren't hypothetical and, chances are, they are in your city. They need people to care for them and make their beds and pray for their parents. Can you do that?