Hand-to-Hand, Heart-to-Heart (Part 2)

April 2016 picture

This is Part 2 of a two-part series on Foster Care Ministry.

Thanks for coming back for Part 2!! I believe I left you with an encouraging thought to put your life, dreams and family on hold and consider a calling that is way out in oceans deep… Let’s go!

I can hear it now, “But this ministry is not for everyone…”

May I then point your attention to James 1:27, “External religious worship [religion as it is expressed in outward acts] that is pure and unblemished in the sight of God the Father is this: to visit and help and care for the orphans and widows in their affliction and need, and to keep oneself unspotted and uncontaminated from the world.

So there you have it… we are ALL called to look after the orphan and the widow. If that is the case then I think we can all agree that we are “called” to somehow play a part in the caring of the orphan (this does not exclude the widow, but for the purpose of this blog we are going to stick to talking about the orphan).

I will admit that this does not mean in EVERY case that you are supposed to open your home to the foster care system, but please, please don’t dismiss this idea because I believe that there are too many Christians hiding behind comfort and fear. There are so many ways that you can “care for the orphan” that perhaps you have not even thought of!  Let me name a few:

1) You or your church small group can “adopt” a Child Protective Services unit (usually anywhere from 3-10 people) and work on building relationships with them, encourage them, take them treats, pray for them… I can say from experience that this job is so very hard, but simple acts of kindness can make it 100 times better.

2) Pray for orphans, pray for their caregivers and pray for their caseworkers.

3) Adopt some foster parents. You can be certified to be a “respite care provider”. Foster children can only be left with these certified caregivers. Can you imagine wanting to go on a date, but you can’t simply because your child needs a certified respite caregiver? Support these parents and get certified. Take them to coffee, cook them dinner. When you find out that they have a new child placed with them, take them supplies! More often than not these kids come on emergency basis and arrive with nothing. These foster parents are on the front lines of the battle for these kids’ hearts, and sometimes they just need to know that someone cares for them too.

4) Be a foster parent! I cannot say this enough; it is so incredibly close to my heart. You have no idea the joy it would bring my heart if I knew every child was in a home that truly cared for them, loved them, called them to be greater, was patient and loving, and filled with love.

You need to do SOMETHING to get involved. This is not a world issue that will end over night, but perhaps we should not think about it in such big terms. Think about in terms of the life of ONE child. ONE broken life. ONE child that has never heard, “I love you. You are worth everything. You are loved, valued, and called to greatness.” What can you do to effect the life of one child? HINT: the answer is not “sit and do nothing.”

Feel free to contact me if you would like more information about the next step in getting involved. I have some families that would love to talk to you about their experience. I would love to talk to you about my experience as a caseworker and as a foster parent. I know fantastic agencies that would love to get you all set up to invite these kids into your home or get you certified for respite care.   You can email me at mdh09c@acu.edu or on Facebook is great too! You don’t have to do this alone. There are so many support systems already in place!

The last video I shared was really hard to watch.  Here is my FAVORITE video ever made about adoption! Try to watch this without crying, laughing, and getting a fire lit under your rear to do SOMETHING for the cause of the orphan.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rztYMMhMT2Y

Thank you for reading this two-part series on Foster Care!

Manda pic Manda Havens

 

One response to “Hand-to-Hand, Heart-to-Heart (Part 2)

  1. I LOVE your list of ways to get involved! Any one of these are doable for all of us! Thanks for the “food for thought”. 🙂

    Like

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