What’s a Momma?
They got ‘K’ out with just the clothes he was wearing and a tattered, dirty blanket.
At nearly two years old, his vocabulary was limited to only three words. Just three! “Juice” “Dog” “Yes”
The words ‘momma’ or ‘dada’ have no meaning. Yet.
‘K’ was rescued from a meth kitchen, a filthy, crowded apartment full of addicts who were cooking drugs to use and to sell. God alone knows what this baby has seen and what little care he has received. How many times has he cried in hunger or thirst and gone to bed with an empty stomach? How many times has he cried for comfort yet, received none?
Imagine that. No cuddles while feeding. No warm, soapy baths. No lovey. No bedtime stories. No peek-a-boo or pat-a-cake.
If this opening makes you sad, God bless you! You are my target audience. You possess the heart I’m hoping to influence and motivate.
The purpose of this article is straightforward and threefold:
-I’m asking you to pray for ‘K’ and other children like him in similar situations as part of America’s foster care system.
-I’m imploring you to consider the possibility of fostering and investing part of your life in a child such as ‘K’.
-I’m urging you to support a foster family, helping them as they seek to help these children.
The family is at the center of all civilized society. It is the basic unit for supplying our wants and needs. So, what happens when you don’t have a family?
Make no mistake, our society is in decline because the family is in decline. This is spiritual warfare, folks. We need to be praying for families. Not just our own, but for all families. Will you commit to a few moments of prayer every day for families?
Imagine going into a place where the conditions are horrible. The odor is overwhelming. It’s dark, but you can see that the children are not being adequately cared for. They’re neglected and hungry. Now picture yourself having to leave those children there because you have nowhere to take them. You can’t rescue them from that mess if you have nowhere to take them.
That would haunt me. Yet, that’s what many welfare workers face every day.
Think about those children as you drive by neighborhood after neighborhood on the way home. It’s house after house with clean, running water. Homes where there will be food left over after dinner. Homes with bathtubs, clean pajamas, pillows, and bedtime stories.
Like me, you may have heard that if every church and synagogue in the U.S. would find one family to take in one child that the foster care system would be empty. Just one child in each body of God-believers…
Sadly, the latest research shows that this is no longer true because there were serious issues with some group foster homes being used in child trafficking. And the fastest, surest way to save those children was to outlaw and shut down all group homes. Praise God that many children were rescued from unspeakable horrors by that recent decision! However, there are now countless children sleeping in the hallways and offices of social service workers. There simply aren’t enough foster homes to take these children in.
Many issues facing our world have no easy solutions. But this one is really simple, y’all! It will happen one heart, one home at a time. This is SO doable.
Did you know that there are all types of foster families? Some take only older, school-aged kids. Some take in newborns only, caring for these little ones until adoptive parents can be found, usually just a matter of a few months. Others open their homes to sibling groups.
I know what many of you are thinking. “I can’t be a foster parent! I would get too attached! It would hurt so much to see them go.”
Please, before you say that to yourself or anyone else, imagine yourself looking into the eyes of our Lord and saying those words. What do you think his response will be? The Bible gives us a glimpse.
“I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a strange and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.”
“They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
He will reply, ’Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’ Matthew 25:42-25
If for some reason you can’t be a foster parent, ‘adopt’ a foster family instead. Care for the caregivers by offering to babysit, make cuddle blankets, provide clothing or shoes.
You can make a massive difference to those opening their homes to foster children by helping with an occasional meal, a batch of macaroni and cheese, or home-baked cookies. Offer to hold and cuddle those babies while mom takes a shower or short nap. Take a child on an outing. Donate small suitcases (how would it affect your self-esteem if everything you owned was stuffed into a trash bag?).
Write notes of encouragement to foster families and social workers. Ask these families what they need. It may be something simple, such as, ‘Could you bring us a gallon of milk?’ Or, it might be, ‘We just got a call and are going to need another crib’. Ask about what’s needed and do what you can. Everyone can do something.
‘K’ is now in the home of a sweet friend of mine. She’s a single mom with two children of her own. Like so many of us, her cup is pretty full. She recently took a respite from fostering. She was tired. Her kids were tired. But it wasn’t long before they all agreed they missed the patter of tiny feet running around the apartment. They missed the cuddling, the feeding, the laughter, and yes, even the crying. And they know how desperately they are needed. Her kids are learning to be wonderful parents. Wonderful people. They’re learning so much. Giving so much.
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. James 1:27
For information go to:
National Foster Parent Association
Contact fostering organizations in your state. Simply Google ‘How to become a foster parent in (your state)’.