We have been foster parents for over a year now. I had no idea how much it would change our lives, for the better!
Like many people I know, I was searching for my calling. I knew that I wanted to do something to help those less fortunate, but I could not find a good fit. We had tried soup kitchens, sandwich lines, delivering Thanksgiving meals to the needy, but none of it filled my heart. I heard someone say once that they wanted to arrive at the Pearly Gates with their arms full of the deeds they had done for God. I was standing here with barely a handful. I continued to pray for God to show me my calling. Finally, he did!
I have always been a “baby person,” and with two teenagers of our own, my husband and I were longing to hold a baby again. Some of our best friends were foster parents, but I had never asked about the details. Then I met a woman at a friend’s house who was fostering a baby, and I started asking questions. I found out that you could request certain ages, you could take one child at a time, and you could work while being a foster parent. I wanted to sign up right then and there!
I won’t say it has always been easy. There are definitely challenges. But as I sit here and watch our five-month-old foster baby smiling and laughing, I know it is worth it. The bottom line is, these kiddos are in the system whether we help them or not. The need is so great. The stories are almost always heartbreaking, but I know we are making a difference that will change these children’s lives forever. We’ve all seen the ads on TV depicting neglected and abused animals. I always have to change the channel. I cannot bear to watch them. But the reality is, there are children, right here in our community, living in the same conditions that animals should not be allowed to live in. We don’t see their faces on TV, but they are there. They need safe, loving homes to get them through these times. We can provide that.
At 46 years old, I finally found my calling — the one that fills my heart. My arms are not full of good deeds yet, but they are full of babies, and for now, that’s good enough for me!