Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Becoming a foster family!

Well I am excited to report that our family has begun the process of becoming foster care certified. (We had to repeat the classes since it has been so long since we last fostered 10 years ago). I don't know exactly what that is going to look like for our family, but we are excited about at least being available to make a difference in the lives of whatever child God would temporarily or permanently bring into our family. We are leaning towards doing emergency foster care. For those not familiar with how it works, an emergency foster home is a very temporary placement until a foster home becomes available for the child. Typically emergency foster homes take in infants and toddlers, as the older children usually go to the children's shelter until a foster home becomes available for them.

The first person that I told this to asked me, "WHY?" (Just exactly like that). Why is it so difficult to answer that question why and why is it that it is so easy to get defensive about it? However, I know that is usually the first question people ask when a family of 7 wants to add more to their plate. So I'll do my best to answer here:

-Well for one there is a great need for foster families, but an even greater need for good foster families.
-We've been blessed with a great home, a great family, we have an extra bedroom, and lots and lots of love to go around.
-We needed an excuse to get a bigger vehicle.
-We love kids!
-We have all fallen in love with my newest little foster nephew and we want one too.
-It is pure religion that God our Father finds faultless. (James 1:27) What better reason than that?

Are your kids in agreement?
-Well it was their idea actually. :)

Aren't you afraid your heart will get broken?
-Well, a little, yes. But it's not about me.

Aren't you afraid that having foster children will take time away from your own kids?
-Not at all, I think it will be good for all of us and make us stronger as a family, just as adopting Ava has made us a stronger family. Like I said, it was their idea!

I'm happy to answer any other questions out there. If you're wondering if foster care might be for your family, I found a list of questions that you can ask yourself here.

Meanwhile does anyone know of any good deals on a big van????


DoveFamily said...

Wonderful news - praying God's blessings as you seek to follow His plan!


Marlita said...

It is so sad that many people assume that every foster child is damaged, and will need a "special" family that can take care of him/her. I know first-hand that foster kids can have issues, but what better way to help them. I know that you will make a great foster family. I'm sure that any child that is placed in a foster home is better off there, than in their own home.
We are enjoying being foster parents, and I'm sure you will too. If you get a newborn, you'll have to come visit so I can get my baby fix :-)

Hollands said...

We finally got our referral to adopt two children from Ethiopia. We're excited, to say the least. Unfortunately, not everyone who's important to us is all that thrilled.

Have you read Francis Chan's book "Crazy Love"? It's incredible. Here's a quote from it:

”We go to church to hear a well-developed sermon and a convicting thought. We’ve trained ourselves to believe that if we’re convicted, our job is done. If you’re just hearing the Word and not actually doing something with it, you’re deceiving yourself. We don’t think it through b/c we’ve developed a habit of listening to the Word of God and not obeying it."

Unfortunately, Charissa, we can expect to get push-back when we live radical lives of obedience. That's when we need to say (maybe not out loud, but maybe sometimes out loud), "I'd rather offend you than Jesus."

Larsen Family said...

God calls us to be different, not like the world. Not everyone's call will be to foster children or even adopt children, but when it is your calling you should accept it with obedience and pray for wisdom.

Any child will be blessed who enters your house. I wish you all the best. As far as, the van. Not sure, we are needing a bigger vehicle, too. I am praying for God to provide. He knows what I want. Good luck.

Mandy said...

You have seriously gone off the deep end and I'm afraid Dan will find out and not let me read your blog anymore!!! LOL
Seriously, just kidding --- I think it's awesome and all the more power to you and your family :)
This world needs more families like yours!
God Bless!

Pan Cratius said...

Point 1,,,you did need a bigger car, I'll vouch for that.
and the point about the Nephew Foster kid, YEP,...that little tiger wakes up hungry, wet diapers and sings...at the top of his lungs, EVERYDAY. I know this for a fact.

Jill said...

CONGRATULATIONS! You will be excellent foster parents!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations. That sounds like a perfect fit for your family. Can't wait to read more details. Would love to know how it all works, classes and such to prepare and how often you are selected, etc.

Anonymous said...

Whoops...didn't sign my name on 'anonymous'. It's old lurker, Jan.

Bethany said...

I think that is great Charissa! I have thought about this too and I have friends who are in process right now.

Christine said...

I am so excited for you! I would love to become foster parents but we can't until kids move out when they are eighteen. SO for now we are going to do respite. We start tomorrow!

I think you guys will be awesome! The need is great!

Valerie said...

YAY! Congratulations on this new adventure Charissa! Every child that steps across the threshold of your home will be blessed and deeply loved! Can't wait to watch this new chapter of your lives unfold!