Almost two years ago, Todd and I went to Orphan Summit in Minneapolis. Summit is sponsored by the Christian Alliance for Orphans and is a place where people can learn about adoption, orphan ministry, and foster care. We met tons of people from different organizations and were overwhelmed by the sheer volume of information. It was an eye-opening few days and they solidified our desire to help the precious little ones that cannot help themselves. We already had our three boys and were just a week away from adding another boy to our family through the foster care system.
Sadly, our foster care experience did not turn out at all like we hoped. We (especially me) were devastated with the situation we found ourselves in and did not feel like we could continue with foster care. So, we took a break and had our family suspended in the foster care system. For the next year, I read adoption blogs, looked at information on starting an orphan ministry, read about international adoption and talked several friends and acquaintances through the beginning steps of adoption. Adoption was never far from my thoughts or my conversations.
But, I was afraid. Not afraid of the hard work of adoption (because it is HARD), but afraid that heartbreak would be our experience again and I did not want that. I didn't want it for me, for Todd, for the boys, or the child that would be in our home. The fact that our last experience did not turn out well haunts me and I wonder often what has happened to John and if he is OK.
About 8 months ago, I decided that it was time to let go of fear and get back in to the foster care system. I guess I haven't totally let go, because this time around we have some pretty set parameters in place for accepting a placement. Because of this, I've only been called once for a placement, that we said no to because of the situation. I have, however, initiated calls for about 5 other possible placements. None of them have worked out.
The last one was this week and was for a little girl that seemed like a good fit for our family. When it didn't work out, I started to question...why was this not working? what is God doing? how many times will I get my hopes up, only to be disappointed? am I missing something? should I be doing something else?
Then, I heard Him say, "It's not about you."
And, I know that's true. It's about being the voice for those who have no voice. It's about giving food and water to people who hunger and thirst. It's about children finding the family that He has for them. It's about being His hands and feet...it's about Him and His glory.
Apparently this is not a lesson I learn well. Oh, but I want to learn it. I want to be able to put myself aside and do what He wants me to do. Not the easy thing, or the comfortable thing, but the thing that will make me more like Him.
I know I'm going to have to remind myself often...it's not about me.