If I speak with the wisdom of Keck and Kupecky, but do not have love, I become a nagging, droning horn in the distance.
If I have the gift of Love and Logic, and know all mysteries and all knowledge of the effects of trauma on a young brain; and if I have all faith in the research and parenting techniques of Heather T. Forbes, Foster W. Cline and Karyn Purvis, but do not have love, I am nothing.
And if I give up my lucrative job to become a parent to children in foster care, and if I surrender my body as a beanbag to my screaming, biting, kicking, angry toddler, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.
Love is patient with court dates coming and going with no verdict, love is kind after my teenager cusses me out, and is not jealous of her deep desire to be with her birth mom; love does not brag about how many children have lived in our home and is not arrogant about being a martyr for the needy, does not act unbecomingly when one child needs more of my time than the others do;
It does not seek its own comfort when my young daughter wants me to lie beside her every night for years due to fear of abandonment, is not provoked when she screams, “You’re not my REAL mom!”, does not take into account an accusation of sexual abuse, does not rejoice when my son gets arrested or placed in a psych ward, but rejoices when he learns how to serve others;
Bears all tantrums and runaway attempts, believes God is sovereign over all the court proceedings, hopes for all the best for my child and birth family, endures all heartache.
Love never fails, prayerfully entrusting our children into the arms of our perfect Father in heaven.
It seems fitting that I am publishing this on the day of my 14th wedding anniversary as I reflect on how this biblical guide describing true love fits into all relationships. I did not plan to be done with it today, but here it is. May God receive all the glory in all the relationships in our lives between broken people (that’s all of us!) that He makes whole.
Michelle is a daughter of God, wife of one handsome hunk, homeschooling mom of three boys, foster mom, foster blogger, and foster care advocate. Over the past 9 years, her family has learned to love their foster children deeply, yet hold them loosely. You can read more from Michelle at lovingdeeplyholdingloosely.com.