You know how something pops up in your life and just changes the course you are on? Well, that happened to me. I know, shocker! I have started fostering! This story actually starts a few years back.
Several years back I was in contact with a mentor and friend of mine, seeking her advice on ways to volunteer within the community. While I was in Michigan, I did volunteer work there; however, none of the same groups were here for me to join. She introduced me to the local Junior League here in our state.
After discovering their purpose and drive for helping the community in its most needed areas, I jumped in with both feet. I was thrilled to be able to do something, help someone, contribute in some small way. Just a couple of years before I joined, the League looked into the community to see what the greatest need was and it was children in the system. Our county is the most overrun with children in foster care.
The children in care are something I believe in helping whole-heartedly. Due to circumstances, not of their own making, these kids have been removed from their homes and shuffled around. They need more people in their corner. The system is too over-worked and flawed to be the only support they have. To see that there are people out there, willing to freely give their time to help these kids in any way needed; I was all for it.
It has been great sharing my experiences and hearing other League members share their life experiences with these kids. Letting them see the different ways you can accomplish your goals. Hearing them talk of what they hope to accomplish, letting them know that they are not alone and they can achieve their goals.
While in the course of working with the League, I was in attendance at my church. I know you’re wondering why I am switching to talking about church but trust me, it all ties together. My Sunday school class is comprised of people who have fostered and even adopted. They are one of the most selfless and giving groups of people I know. So, being surrounded by my church family, who are involved with foster children, and then volunteering to help foster children just drove the point home of helping these children.
About two years back, when the League was last able to have in-person meetings (pre-covid), I would see this brother and sister attend our meetings. They were soft-spoken, keeping to themselves. It broke my heart seeing them and I just wanted to take them home with me. That was when I first thought of fostering.
However, we all know we can think about doing something but never take the necessary steps to do it. I had all these doubts as to why I would not be approved to foster: I’m a single woman, I don’t make enough money, etc. Letting these doubts win, I did not attempt to foster.
At this time, my church was doing a bible study. If you need a good bible study to wake you up, please read Experiencing God by Henry and Richard Blackaby. During this study, we went over how God is building our character. At a time when you think everyone else is working hard and achieving goals, yet you feel stuck in place; God is actually building your character through whatever situation you are in. He is preparing you for the plans He has made for you. This hit me hard because I do feel like I am behind in achieving goals. I have friends getting married and having children, working in an area they love. Then me, still single, contemplating a career change. And when I felt Him call to me again about fostering,
I called up people currently fostering. I discussed all my doubts about being approved to foster and they knocked each one down. So, here I am, after three years of being surrounded my foster work, taking the leap and following God.
So, if you have something in your life you have been questioning and debating on; go for it. Take that leap. Your friends and family will be there for you, and God will always guide you.