The unexpected

Time to deal with the big fat elephant in the room. πŸ™‚ I have been coming back to this post for months. I recognize all sorts of things are going to come to a readers mind and I welcome any questions from friends and strangers alike. On top of pointing to Christ and his redemptive power, I would want this post to open a door for anyone that feels they can relate to the struggle. You don’t even necessarily have to be a foster parent to deal with the strong feelings the enemy can near torture you with. I would be more than happy to exchange emails for an avenue of personal encouragement if you need prayer or just to talk. God created the body, his church, so we can uplift each other. And that’s the only reason I even keep this blog, because by Gods grace, it has been encouragement to others. It’s not me, it’s all him! πŸ˜‰

So I really feel that I need to share this and am reminded that:

1.) Gods great love covers my short comings 1 Peter 4:8
2.) He works all things for the good of those who love him. Romans 8:28

Some of you may be wondering… where we are with foster care and Faithbridge and that little girl who came to us back in July.

Well…..

Our first placement left us in January shortly after the new year. She did not go home though, she was placed with another family. And trust me when I say, I am more shocked by that than you are. I know we are not the first foster family to walk through the process and decision of having to place a child in another home but that did not make it any easier. It was probably the hardest decision we’ve ever made after one of the hardest seasons of our life. Going into this our hope was of course to see her reunified with her mother. We didn’t get to see that through. But it’s not about us…. Which I believe continues to be the BIGGEST thing God needs for me to learn, among many others.πŸ˜‰

I want to share some personal details because I know God has purpose in our experience. I keep coming back to this rough draft trying to determine “Lord, what do you want me to say, how can this story be shared to honor you?” I am confident that someone needs to hear it,…. someone who was like me. There were many times that I felt so alone and that no one would understand. I wouldn’t dare be candid about things I was really feeling with anyone outside of Jason, my parents and a very select few friends. Satan was good at capitalizing on feelings of guilt, shame, and failure and diminishing any of the work God was doing. It just became a very hard time and clearly not at all what we would have wanted or expected. But friends, it’s not a cliche saying to make us feel better, God works in ways we just can’t understand. Often we define success much differently than God and we really can’t see the bigger picture or understand how he uses all things for good. Especially when we view circumstances as bad. We tend to wonder “why would you let that happen?” But stay there long enough and satan will win in keeping us ineffective as Christians. It is a fight but we must move forward with confidence that God can redeem all of our brokenness. Because He CAN! πŸ™‚

I could blog about more intimate struggles I had, like praying for bedtime to come. I was emotionally over-done, spent, maxed out. Can you relate? πŸ˜‰

#Sleeping.was.my.favorite.

I don’t mind being honest about some of my less than stellar behaviors but for the sake of time I’ll get to the point. It basically came down to recognizing that I was no longer serving her with excellence or our family for that matter. Lots of things led up to that but at that point it became more about letting go of pride, wondering what would people think and doing what was best for her, our children, and our marriage. In the midst of our decision I really mourned the situation, I questioned and wondered. I felt “what was the point?” but I knew I couldn’t stay in that state, it was just plain miserable. God was calling me to trust him. To trust that he still cared and loved that little girl and his love will be sufficient where mine or anyone else’s isn’t. HE is watching over her and knows her future and will put more individuals in her life to minister to her heart and soul. To trust that he still cared and loved our family, that he used us for a season and now he was changing the season on us. I had to trust him that she was going to be okay and that she needed things from this new foster family that I (we) could not provide. And I had to trust the Holy Spirits leading, that letting go of her was what she needed us to do, and that I had most certainly NOT fallen out of my Heavenly Fathers favor. Biggest lie satan tries to tell us. Sometimes we will have moments in our faith where the biggest exercise of it is believing God loves us no matter what. Satan is good at convincing us otherwise, convincing us that we need to work harder at being better to be accepted by God. But Jesus died for us while we were still sinners, and the requirement is not that we have to be perfect for Him to accept us, he already has. I’m an easy target for this mentality and now in what satan wants to stamp a big “FAIL” sign on, God keeps whispering to me “no Katie. I’m still God, I’m still at work, and I will always love you. I have control over this, even when you feel out of control, I still reign and I will be glorified.”

I know that when we started with Faithbridge we genuinely believed God was calling us to that area of ministry. I don’t think it was a mistake even though it did not turn out how we thought it would. There are things we learned that had we not walked that we obviously wouldn’t know. I know we can pray and encourage people in ways we wouldn’t have been able to had we not gone through what we did. Sometimes when we are walking through dark valleys, just having a person tell us “I get it. I truly understand how you are struggling.” That alone can keep us from not going off the deep end! God gives us people like that to say “You can persevere and I will support you in every way I know possible because I know how hard this is.”

So right now where does this have us…. We are stepping back from
foster parenting for now. For me it’s simply trying to make that conscious choice every moment to choose Christ, his hope, believe in his redemptive power and his sovereignty and amazing grace. I’ll be honest, at points I felt so shaken in my Faith and I really am trying to trust where God has us right now and wherever he plans to take us tomorrow.

One day at a time.

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4 thoughts on “The unexpected

  1. I have always loved your honesty and transparency. Know that you are not the first caregiver to go through this. Right now we are in the middle of a fairly difficult placement and yes #sleepingismyfavorite haha!

    Bringing in a child who has walked through any type of crisis or trauma leaves you more spent emotionally, physically than you can imagine unless you walked through it. It can even leave us drained spiritually if we’re not careful. But for one day, one week, one month or one year we (you) were able to love on a child who needed, to pray over a specific face and name that you may not have had the opportunity to pray over otherwise. So you are not a failure.

    We are right in the middle of the trenches right now with our little houseguest and I have quickly learned to say that I don’t know what tomorrow holds. I don’t know if we’ll do this for years to come or if we’ve only got a few more hostings in us but I know that God has given us peace when it has been time to say yes and He will give us peace when it’s time to say no more. I trust He has done the same for you. No judgment, you are brave and strong and God has you exactly where he wants you, sweet friend! You have such insight to be able to recognize that your main ministry (your family) needed more attention. Blessings to you and yours!

    • I appreciate your comment so much. Thank you Jessika! And like I said, having walked it, I know things and ways to pray specifically for others and I will be praying for you. You have always been such a source of spiritual encouragement. So blessed to know you through blog/email world.

  2. Wow Katie, I so can relate but in a little different senerio! Back in Sept, of last year my grandkids were taken from me, I used to watch them everyday. I was devastated I cried my eyes out! But I was going thru something physically that I didn’t know what was wrong with me. I was having anger issues and I would yell and scream at the kids and I was always so tired! Then one day while I was cleaning the youngest’s behind from pooping in her pants, I left my fingernail prints on her buttocks. I surely did not mean to do that and I was devastated upon finding out I did it! Well when they took the kids from me, I thought what reason do I have to get up everyday, none!!! Then God kept leaving me messages about when he takes something from you, it is because he has something better for you. I thought what could he have better for me then raising my grandkids and showing them the only Christian life they got to see, but unfortunately I wasn’t being too Christian like and he knew that. So this put a big strain on my relationship with my son and his girlfriend to say the least. Not a very good Christmas last year. But I prayed and asked God to reveal to me what I can do to fix this relationship and he did. But one of the greatest things that came out of all this was my relationship with my oldest granddaughter, we are so much closer than ever before! She tells me she loves me instead of telling me how she hates me! Our relationship is what it is suppose to be a grandma and grandchildren! Then early this year God lead me to the place I am buying because before I was looking for something that would work for the kids being with me and God had other plans! He takes away from us what we won’t give up on our own! He then gave me this job I have literally, I didn’t go looking for it! But I love what I’m doing! Then a couple months back I was asked if I could watch the kids again and the answer was NO without any hesitation! Not that I don’t want to but God does not want me too! Well I finally found out what was causing my anger issue,I have adrenal fatigue and it takes months to a year to recover from it and I’m not suppose to have any stress in my life….yeah right!!!! But one thing God has been telling me a lot lately is We walk by faith not by sight. We can’t see what he has in store for us but we must have faith that he has something better for us. Which in my case he did! Don’t beat yourself up, God knows exactly his plans for you! I hope in some small way this will bring you comfort in knowing He has something else in store for you guys, just be patience and never loose faith!

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