Why foster and adoptive families need to be asking for help!
Let me guess, you are fine. Maybe even doing well! At least, that is what 95% of foster and adoptive parents always tell me.
After a few pointed questions, all the trauma and the truth of what you are experiencing come out. So, we cry together before going to hear the sermon.
The pastor preaches about how beautiful adoption and foster care are and the mandate to answer this call. Meanwhile, you are slowly dying in the third row. You know the reality of what is unfolding in your own home. But maybe you are the only one struggling? Your other friends have no clue, and you hide everything in silence so no one will find out. The church stands by unaware, as we have for the last fifty years.
Maybe you feel unseen or even hurt, for which I am genuinely sorry. Organizations that equip churches to serve foster and adoptive families have one tiny favor:
We need you to ask for help.
Wait. Please, wait. Before you say you are fine, again. Please, hear us out.
Jesus did not call you to do this alone.
We were designed to work together as the body of Christ.
1 Corinthians 12:25-27 reminds us:
So that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
Statistically, there is a 50% chance you will quit foster care within the first year. If you are supported and wrapped around by your church, you have a 90% likelihood to continue in your calling. You need them.
Your transparency reminds others that Jesus is the only savior.
You are incredible!
I could never do what you do.
You are my hero.
When we are honest with others about the complexity of adoption and foster care, it helps us stay humble in our journey and point others to the only one capable of saving.
You create much-needed awareness of the needs.
Being open helps others to learn about what is happening in our community regarding vulnerable children and families.
If you still aren't convinced, look at it this way:
You aren't asking for help; you are empowering others to answer the call to orphan care.
Caring for the orphan and widow is the very heart of God. We are all called to be a part somehow. By saying you need help, you invite others to join at a place where they are able. Often, volunteers step into deeper roles.
We have learned that many don't foster or adopt because they fear being alone or isolated. When it is realized they won't do this alone, they too jump in.
Asking for help is probably going to be hard for you. Maybe you need to practice first. Try starting with looking in the mirror and repeating this daily affirmation.
I am good enough. I am smart enough. And, doggonit, this is hard, and I would be grateful if you could help me.