Shaina and I have begun the process of being certified to foster parent and adopt. We have gone through moments with Chaia where we weren't sure if she would make it, we weren't sure if we would make it and in some ways we are likely signing up to do much of that all over again.
Here's the long and short of it. I think many well intentioned Christians sit in prayer waiting on God. They want to know what God wants from them. They want to get the Burning Bush experience so that they can know for sure. They want to get the neon sign and then they will gladly commit to obedience.
Sometimes this is exactly the right move. It is right and good to wait on the Father to speak...to silence our voices and thoughts long enough for the still small voice of God to thunderously speak. It is good to wait on God.
But sometimes God's waiting on us.
Sometimes it is so obviously clear what is close to God's heart, that to sit and wait is absolute defiance to the one we claim to want to obey.
Friends, the Foster Care system is hard and in many ways broken. This is not anything new. There are kids who have been through months and years of being told through word, action and inaction that they are not worth being part of a forever family. That they are unwanted and unloved. They've been orphaned.
And then there is this theme of adoption in the biblical narrative.
In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us. (Ephesians 1:5-8)
Now Jesus’ mother and brothers came to see him, but they were not able to get near him because of the crowd. Someone told him, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you.”
He replied, “My mother and brothers are those who hear God’s word and put it into practice.” (Luke 8:18-20)
See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! (1 John 3:1)
For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba,Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. (Romans 8:14-16)
The good news is that God has adopted us...the ones who were unlovable and unwanted...the ones who were undeserving and unwelcome...It was His GOOD PLEASURE to LAVISH HIS LOVE on US, His ORPHANED KIDS.
So, what better message is there than that in the world?
I'll tell you.
It's taking that message and actually showing it tangibly to others.
If one family from every church in Ohio were to foster/adopt, the foster care system as we know it would be eradicated.
Some are waiting on the government to do something about this. I think God's waiting on us.
I'm not saying everyone who is a Christian is called to offer a forever family (or at least a temporary, stable family) to kids who have been deemed unwanted or unlovely. But I am saying that way more are called to it than are currently considering it.
I don't think the world will take Christians seriously until Christians take Christ seriously (and I don't mean in the "Does God love gay people" or "Which doctrines do we believe" kinds of ways we've wasted too much of our lives on).
I'm not saying it will be fun or easy or that it wouldn't cause immense heartache and frustration. I'm just saying most often the better things are the more costly things. The good things are the more complicated things. The beautiful things stem from the inconvenient things.
Maybe we aren't supposed to wait until we get the green light to go...maybe the green light's already there and we go until there's a No.
You think all kids matter and should have a shot at a forever family? So does God. (mic dropped, soapbox put away).
Here we go.