“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans…” (James 1:27).
I never imagined that at 40 years old and after three biological children, my husband and I would become foster parents of children who due to physical and/or psychological abuse, neglect, drug exposure, or domestic violence are under the care of the Florida Department of Children and Families.
Although I never imagined I would become a foster parent at this season in my life, I’ve also understood how the Lord has been weaving my destiny since I was young. Orphans always caught my attention and I volunteered in orphanages and worked with children in need.
Ten months ago we were blessed with our first placement – a beautiful baby girl just six days old! Our home was filled with joy and at the same time a lot of uncertainty! With the new addition to our family, we began to experience a mountain of emotions that we had never experienced before. It was difficult to understand that my arms held a helpless little being and provided for her the only certainty and stability she had experienced since her birth.
I have to be honest and admit to you that at times my heart was filled with joy for so much tenderness and yet at other times it broke in pain for all that this little one had endured! It was at that moment when I remembered the word that the Lord had put in my husband’s heart for a long time: “Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans…” (James 1:27). It was very clear that the time had come for us to do just that!
Being foster parents is the best thing that has happened to us as a family and also what has made us suffer the most! It’s beautiful! And it’s very ugly too! And it’s not a contradiction. It’s the best thing that has happened to us because we have witnessed how the hand of God works in those little lives and those of their families when we are instruments of God’s love in providing protection and a safe home. It’s ugly to see the reasons why these children are removed from their homes and to see how such a small child can suffer SO MUCH! They don’t deserve such abuse, much less to receive it from those who should’ve protected them.
So if it’s so difficult, why do we do it? I conclude by telling you that the Bible is full of examples of how Jesus transformed destruction into restoration and how He cured many diseases and rehabilitated many people. I conclude by telling you that the tragedy of these children does have hope – Jesus! We are responsible for representing Jesus, for walking as He did with compassion and embracing others’ needs. We are bearers of God’s love and we will do whatever it takes to bring healing to their lives and make a difference in them.
Principal of Pneuma Christian Academy