Wednesday, May 6, 2009

"You should collect them" (children, that is)

I continue to be amazed and inspired by my children. Going on six, Zachary has character, generosity, compassion, depth and awareness far beyond his years. As we were leaving the grocery store tonight, he said something about orphans. I asked him what he thought an orphan was and he said, "Someone who doesn't really have anyone. I mean, has no family. No where to live." I agreed with him, but shared a couple of "orphan" situations that I know of right here in America... A grown woman whose parents had both died when she was in her early 20's. We talked about how sad and lonely that would be; similar to feelings that an orphaned child in another country would feel (he's heard a lot of talk about orphans in third world countries). I also talked about another grown woman whose father abandoned her when she was a tiny baby. He never showed any love for her and never tried to see her. Then she had a second father who had promised to love her and take care of her, but he hurt her and did not love her like he should have. And the little girl's mother knew that her second dad was hurting her and she didn't do anything to make it stop. This little girl, even though she lived in a house with her mom and dad, always felt like an orphan - unloved and all alone.

Zachary interjected immediately. "Mom, you should collect them!" I asked what he meant and he said, "We should collect those kids whose parents do not treat them right and let them come live at our house." My heart raced, tears came to my eyes and time stood still all at once... Hearing those thoughtful words come out of his mouth was completely overwhelming. I told him that the Bible says that God is the father to the fatherless. That HE is the daddy to those who do not have good earthly parents. And, when someone takes in a child who is not theirs and loves them as if they are, then that person is being exactly the way God wants us to be.

Fostering and/or adopting through the foster system has been a dream of mine for a very long time. I have not yet felt God's tug saying, "It's time" and I do not know if it truly is his plan or merely my passion. But, I am humbled to see this kind of compassion and selflessness in my child. I pray that God will grow that in him and use that to change lives.

"A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families, he leads forth the prisoners with singing" Psalm 68:4-5a

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