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Category: Encouragement

Adoption, Encouragement, Family Support, Foster Parenting, Ways to ServeApr. 22, 2016

Forgotten Friday | Wrapping Around Foster and Adoptive Families

An environment where it’s understood that while we’re not all called to do the same thing, we’re all certainly capable of doing something. That’s the goal. Everyone. Doing. Something. If we’re not careful, we may unintentionally define caring for orphans and the vulnerable too narrowly – to simply mean foster care, adoption or some other form of bringing a child into your home long term. While these are of course crucial and essential places for the Church to engage, they represent only a few of the items on the buffet of limitless opportunities available for people to get involved. The […]

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Encouragement, Family Support, Foster ParentingApr. 15, 2016

Forgotten Friday | Finding Strength in the Sabbatical

Today, our family’s numbers are down. Today, I catch myself when someone asks me how many kids I have. I quickly correct the count in my quiver because conversing about foster care isn’t topping the agenda. Today I am breathing. And I am building my stamina. Again. God is breathing new life as I simply sit. I am learning to say no to placement calls and yes to so much more. For today. My arms have been so full of someone else’s child for many months. So I’m resting. And in this sabbatical, I’m finding more than I imagined. These revelations for me have come with time, space and tears. So […]

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Adoption, Advocacy, Aging Out Youth, Children in Foster Care, Education, Encouragement, Forgotten Fridays, Ways to ServeApr. 1, 2016

Forgotten Friday | When Children are Broken and Fatherless: A Call to Defend Them

I remember the girl who said to me, “I wish I had a normal life…” Her words pierced me through. It was a legitimate wish. Her life wasn’t normal, and I could convince neither her nor myself that it was. Instead of a home, she lived in a facility. I’d seen her room—the one that she’d sarcastically referred to as her jail cell. And to be fair to her, it did look like one—composed of nothing but a small bed and four concrete walls. But this was no jail, in the literal sense, as you or I would think of it. This […]

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Advocacy, Encouragement, Family Support, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysMar. 21, 2016

Make a Difference Monday | The Importance of Real Support

A funny thing happens when I’m around people who encourage me. I get better. I do bigger things and I do them well. I am able to really believe that I am capable of more. And, not surprisingly, when I’m around people who don’t believe I can do something, I get overwhelmed, I fail, I second guess myself, I quit early. One of the biggest challenges I have seen foster parents face is finding a real support system. Not just people who tell you you’re doing a nice thing in passing, but people who continue to say, “you are doing […]

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Encouragement, Family SupportFeb. 22, 2016

Make a Difference Monday | Real, Not True. Overcoming Feelings of Failure

I’m not prone to depression. But today, I think I’m getting a small taste of it. The sorrow has been so thick, I can almost reach out and touch it. Like an unwelcome blanket…smothering me. I feel like a failure. A failure as a wife. A failure as a mom. A failure as a foster mom. A failure as a friend. A failure as a homemaker. A failure as a homeschooler. A failure as a writer. I feel like I’m making a mess of one thing after another. And I feel like the messes can’t be cleaned up. I feel overwhelmed by […]

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Adoption, Advocacy, Children in Foster Care, Encouragement, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingFeb. 5, 2016

Forgotten Friday | When will you stop making your mommy carry you?

It’s been a long few weeks. My mother is critically ill and my children haven’t seen much of me lately. Let’s not mention the fact that they were just adopted this year so though lately I’ve not been around much, I missed a whole lot more of the beginning of their lives. This morning my oldest daughter went off to school early, thanks to my wonderful neighbor. I was taking my youngest to preschool. I spent a few extra minutes snuggling her. It was divine. Finally, we got in the car to begin our day. She is going to preschool […]

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Advocacy, Children in Foster Care, Encouragement, Foster Care Affects on Kids Already in Your Home, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysDec. 28, 2015

Make a Difference Monday: Love ’em and Let ’em Go

I’ve always been open to adoption. But there are two things I said I would never do: 1.) Adopt a child here in the States. 2.) Be a foster parent. Don’t worry, I have nothing against American children. My hesitancy was never about the kids. It’s about their circumstances. You see, I grew up in the 80’s and 90’s hearing way too many horror stories of people who had adopted children in the U.S. only to have the biological parents knock on their door or serve them court papers six months or two years or five years down the road, demanding them […]

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Adoption, Children in Foster Care, Encouragement, Family Support, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysDec. 21, 2015

Make a Difference Monday: Top 10 Characteristics of Successful Foster & Adoptive Families

As a supervisor for a program that licenses foster and adoptive families for children in state custody, I have had the privilege of working with many wonderful and caring families who desire to make a difference in the lives of children and youth. One part of the responsibilities that my staff and I carry is the assessment of prospective foster families. There are many tools and resources that we use to help us with this task, as well as one-on-one and group interaction with individuals. During our assessment process, we often look for several characteristics that lean towards the success […]

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Advocacy, Encouragement, Family Support, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference Mondays, Ways to ServeOct. 26, 2015

Make a Difference Monday: WE are the Church

Not long ago, I was ignorant. I believed that we were all called to adopt. Or foster. It was a command. And I like to follow rules. Okay. That’s a lie. I’m more of a rule bender, but I do like to enforce rules. I’m bossy. I know. But I just wanted others to open others’ eyes to the needs of thousands of orphans and broken families. Then I stepped out in obedience and realized I was wrong. Very wrong. If we ALL signed up to adopt a child or foster a baby, we’d ALL be exhausted and walking this […]

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Encouragement, Family Support, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingSep. 4, 2015

Forgotten Friday: You, friend, are not alone.

I have a dear friend. Her heart is incredible and she is walking a journey of listening, discerning, obedience and heart change. I received an email from her last week that sounded so desperate and so exhausted and I thought some other mamas may need to hear this truth in my reply to her… Sweet (insert your name),  I am now home-reading your email again and responding.  I almost dialed your number but for some reason I feel led to type out my words of encouragement and affirmation right now. Maybe so you can read them again and again (I don’t […]

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