Thursday, March 08, 2012

She calls me Mama

Yes, she does.

And Mark is Daddy.

This would bother some. Because I am NOT her mommy. She has that.

But she is 2, and she knows that when she yells mommy, I answer.

And really, have you tried to reason with a 2 year old? How did that go for you?

Comments have been made. "I could NEVER (oh how I despise the word NEVER) do that. I would get so attached and it would hurt so much to send her back."

"Isn't it hard on your kids?"

"Isn't it hard to take care of someones kid with no return? Isn't it frustrating? "

Hear my heart on this.

 If you avoid doing something because it would be hard,

Because you are afraid it would hurt?

Because it might UPSET "your children".

SHAME ON YOU. ESPECIALLY if you call yourself a christian.

And I mean that in the nicest way. Of course.


There are children, created by God our Father, who need help.

And would we seriously, as believers, IGNORE them, because of fear?

Well obviously the answer to that is yes.

One can simply look around at the orphan crisis and see that is clear.

Is it going to be hard to say goodbye? Well yes, a little. She is a cutie and she has us all wrapped around her tiny finger.

BUT she is not ours. And we know that. Her mama loves her and that alone makes it EASY to say goodbye.

Am I causing trauma for my children by brining kids in and out?

I don't think so. I pray that what I am bringing them is a hands on experience of Jesus in flesh.

We love, even though we can't keep.

We help, because God calls us too.

We embrace the opportunities when they are given to us to share His love with strangers.

We sacrifice things to serve Christ. Maybe it is our time, our freedom, our money, maybe even our FUN.

And no, I get "nothing in return". I don't get the joy of seeing this child grow up. I don't get to claim her as mine. I don't get to include her on my Christmas card.

But I feel I get so much!  For 10 days I enjoy baby giggles and the hair I always wanted on a baby!

I get to pray over a child for TEN DAYS, day in and day out,  that is not my own.

I get to watch my kids enjoy their role as big siblings to someone they never met.

I get to pray for and interact with her mama, and prayerfully share the reason WHY I do this.

I am reading the book Kisses from Katie by Katie Davis. AMAZING book I challenge everyone to read.

Today what I was reading was so perfect with this blog I had started.Here is just a small paragraph, please take time to read her whole post here. You will need to go to November 2009 on the sidebar. In this post she is talking about how we hurt for all children of course, but when it is OUR children, it is different.

Its just different when its your child who's suffering. But should it be? This is what I have been struggling with. I believe that this is a normal human reaction. I also believe it is WRONG. I believe that each human on the planet is God's child, perfectly made and beloved and cherished by Him. I believe that His heart hurts like mine does, even more than mine does, when my baby is hurting for EACH and every one of the hurting, dying, starving, crying children in our world at this moment. So I HAVE to believe that if my heart was truly seeking to be aligned with the heart of God, that I would have to hurt for each of these children as well. But sometimes, I forget. Sometimes I'm busy. Sometimes hurting for my very own children just feels like enough. I believe that the world says that this is ok. And I believe it is wrong. And this keeps me up at night.

I think that God surely had me to read THIS part of her book on this day. A day when I want to share my heart on WHY we would do this program. A week when I am struggling on if we will continue to homeschool next year. A month when I am planning my trip to China, and feeling as if my heart will never stop breaking for the orphan.

I love my children. They are MINE. There are days they drive me batty and I am tired and yell and complain about them all. But I would die for each of them. At the rate we are going today, one might MAKE me die to be honest! (that was a joke) I would give up ANYTHING for them. But what about all the others that have no one to give even a little? The ones who have never heard I love you, who are infested with lice and no one to pick it out of their hair? Or puking with no one to clean them up. Or have heart surgery with no one to love them through it. What about them?

It has been suggested to me that motherhood is a season, and when the kids are grown THEN I can focus on other things. I disagree.

Am I supposed to continue to homeschool my kids, when it might keep me from taking in more who need a home?

Am I supposed to stay home, because I am the mom and we don't leave our children OR go on mission to serve those who have no one?

Am I supposed to put them in sports and extra activities because it is FUN for them, or say no because it leaves us no time to serve and do things that God places on our hearts?

Bottom line, are MY children MORE important than the kids who have no one?

Are MY children more important than what God places on my heart.

It is a hard one isn't it? When you read Katie's thoughts, it makes you think.

Are our hearts seeking to be aligned with God? And would God be ok, if we said, I took care of MINE.

Obviously it is a journey He is taking me on that I don't know the answer. And I also believe the answer is different for everyone. God calls each of us in so many different ways, thankfully. Katie is a beautiful example of that. At 18 He called her to Uganda and she is the mother of 13 little girls! We are not all called to Uganda. Or China, or to even be a part of Safe Families.

But we are called to Love. Even if it gets messy. Even if it is uncomfortable.

And yes, even if it hurts....

Thanks for the "pity"you all have sent. We are doing better. Praise God! And I have not YET had the stomach flu. Instead I showed off how graceful I am yesterday by slipping on the baby's high chair tray. (because I am just not used to high chair trays that 2 year olds just carry around!) I took a slide across our tile and fell back on a corner of the wall.  I felt blood and just lost it. Thankfully my nurse friend came over and declared it to not need stitches. I think I stopped crying 3 hours later, or really today. Makenna asked if I was crying from pain or frustration and it was both.  It DID hurt! But the mix of no sleep and pure exhaustion from taking care of a sick household alone just did me in. Thankful for sweet family & friends who dropped off dinner, juice, took the baby & mopped up my blood. ;-)  Today is a new day & Mark is trying to get back in town sooner than planned. I left the house with the non sick ones (Malaine and baby) and it felt good simply walking around Walmart and stocking up on movies! There is a certain child in this house who does not do well off her schedule and it is enough to make me want to bang my head against the wall. But that would not help my head feel better for sure. Hence the need for a Walmart run and movies.  Mark and I talked last night how EVERY.SINGLE.TIME. he goes, not just little things happen but MAJOR things. Well major to me. Lice and Stomach flu are major in my book. We were trying to figure out the lesson we know God must SURELY be trying to teach us. Are we doing something wrong? Should we NOT be taking in MORE kids? Is THAT the lesson? Because let me tell you, adding a 2 year old that is not yours in with stomach flu is not a fun thing. I started doubting. Is this REALLY what He wants? Isn't it enough that I have FIVE of my own to clean bodily functions up after?? But God is always so quick to stop those doubts with truth. Ok, honestly He might be quick but I am SLOW to listen.. But with a night of sleep I was able to see what He wants me to always remember. Even when it feels we are walking through the fire, He loves me and He is here.

“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; 

   I have summoned you by name; you are mine. 
2 When you pass through the waters, 
   I will be with you; 
and when you pass through the rivers, 
   they will not sweep over you. 
When you walk through the fire, 
   you will not be burned; 
   the flames will not set you ablaze. 
3 For I am the LORD your God, 
   the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; 
I give Egypt for your ransom, 
   Cush[a] and Seba in your stead. 
4 Since you are precious and honored in my sight, 
   and because I love you,


Wendy said...

Shannon, I've never commented on your blog, but I wanted to let you know you are an inspiration to me. Your post today, about where your role as a mother to your children and your purpose outside your family/as your kids get older is something I've pondered quite a bit. I don't have the answers, but I like what you have been doing with your time and family. God bless you with strength as you bless others with your love and service. --Wendy Range

Jodi said...

Amen! Amen! and Amen!!!

Sandy said...

Keep your chin up sweet friend.

"She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come." Proverbs 31:25

Hope we can both look back in awesome wonder to see what the Lord has in store for us on the other side of this season.

You are such a Godly woman and should never have to justify what the Lord lays on your heart.

Will keep praying for you!

In His Love,

Charlie said...

Shannon, you're such an inspiration to me! I'm so glad I get to know you, and I'm so excited to finally be able to meet you in less than 4 months! My mom feels called to foster, so we are looking at houses with an extra bedroom. I think the safe families program is awesome! Such a cool opportunity to be the hands and feet of Christ in your own home everyday!

chinacalls said...

You have inspired me to write in my blog tonight. I have benefited from your misery, because of the words it has brought out to others. I really needed to read your words tonight. We were at Tim's grandmother's funeral and while some are very happy for our adoption, others just can't understand. Thank you for your words Shannon, they are very inspiring. Satan has been on attack and you have rebounded with the Lord and then some.

Annie Chase said...

Isaiah 43:4 is one of my FAVORITE verses. I'm so glad you included it. Most people stop right before it. Could it get any more clear that He loves us? I think not :)

Just dropping by,
Can't wait to meet you soon in person.
~Annie Chase~

Amy said...

SO well said. Praying for you. Wish I lived close....I could bring my 5 over and "help"! Love your faith and your trust in Him. Keep on my friend! Amy

Anonymous said...

Again, another wonderful, inspirational post. I love reading your blog. I love how to reveal the great, the good, the bad and the ugly.
I feel that your children are benefitting from being a Safe Family and helping out mothers in need. I work with a 22 year old girl at the hospital whose parents fostered and you can tell in her personality how it has affected her. Her name is Caitlin and she is one of the most kindest and giving people I know.

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