I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. That’s what my email said this morning. Because today is 4/13 so Philippians 4:13.
The challenge was to hold up the I CAN paper for the 4/13 celebration. But it got me thinking of all the things I can do…
I can foster. I can open my home and my heart. I can foster knowing the kids I love will not stay with me forever. I can foster knowing that some things are completely out of my control. I can foster knowing things escalate quickly and people will hit rock bottom before they ask for help. I can foster knowing everything could go wrong and the kid will ask for another placement. I can foster knowing everything could go right and the kid will still leave. I can foster knowing that reunification is the goal. I can be hurt the kid is leaving and happy for reunification at the same time. I can keep saying yes even if I never hear a thank you. I can keep saying yes even if reunification happens and the kid I love forgets all about me. I can keep saying yes even when plans change on a dime. I can keep saying yes even when it’s not about me or my feelings at all, not even the slightest little bit. I can keep saying yes when all I hear is no because there is a possibility that kid will hear yes. I can do my job as a foster parent. I can love ’em while I got ’em.
Lord, my heart grieved yesterday. Not because I heard reunification is a possibility after all. Because I am selfish and I had plans. Because I won’t get to see her do marching band in the fall. I won’t get to see her get her driver’s license or go off to college or go to prom. I grieved because of all the things I will miss, most of all her.
But today, I can celebrate because reunification is a possibility and that is the ultimate goal. Because she will thrive. Because she will fail some too, but she will get back up and keep going because she is resilient. Because she will be given the chance at normalcy. Because she is capable of handling this responsibility and freedom. Because she has grown and progressed so, so much. Because she is smart and talented and funny and she is a force and a light. Because she is a really, really good kid. Because she loves You, Lord.
So, this is my prayer today. Because you reminded my heart yesterday that this is the job, this is a good thing. This is where I sing praises. Hallelujah, Amen. This means I did my job, and I did it well. Because you reminded my heart today that I didn’t do any of it alone. You gave me strength to foster, and you will give me strength during reunification. I prayed for this. I prayed for you to break my heart for what breaks yours. I prayed for this. I prayed for this kid. I prayed for reunification. And my village people prayed for her too. Thank you, God, for answered prayers. Foster care plans change on a dime. One minute, she’s staying another two years and the next she’s leavin in two months. This is where I use my coping with change target skill. 1. Identify exactly what is changing. Check. 2. Ask questions for clarification. Check. 3. Remain calm and relaxed. Check. 4. Appropriately discuss your feelings about the change with a caring adult. Check. 5. Avoid becoming unmotivated or depressed. Yesterday, we did not check this one, so I’m praying for this one today. Because apparently today is my day to grow and learn and not be selfish. Lord, I know she is going to be ok. I know this is what is best for her. Lord, help me let go. Lord, help me be brave. Lord, help me to love like you love. And as always I pray for my family and sorority sisters. I pray for my university. I pray for guidance for our government, church, and school leaders. I pray for protection for our troops. I pray for all those that need you now and for those that haven’t met you yet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.