When God Grabs Hold (Part 3)

Friday, April 14, 2017

Just in case you missed them, you can find Part 1 here and Part 2 here.

The day Mike and I were going to the free informational meeting about foster care, I called my Grandmother Honey. I wanted to share with her what was going on, and hear any advice that she may have. Now, Honey did not know that later that day Mike and I were going to attend the meeting but when I did tell her that we were considering becoming certified as a foster family her immediate an only advice was, "You both have to be on board, in order for this to go well, you both have to be on board. Mike knows how you feel, I would let him take the next step from here. If it is in God's plan for this to happen, it'll happen when both of you are ready."

As much as I agreed with her advice, I could feel doubt creeping in..."What if he doesn't take the next step?" "What if I read this all wrong?" "How do I know this is where God is leading us?" I began to pray.

"God, let your will not my will be done."

When we arrived at CYFD office the parking lot was SPARSE. There was only one other couple there, and a woman from CYFD to answer questions. I could hear Honey's words ringing through my head. "Let him take the next step." The meeting didn't last very long, and I kept relatively quiet with the exception of a few questions. Mike asked a few questions and as the meeting began to come to a close I fully expected to leave there empty handed, and spend a couple of months (or years) having more conversations while waiting to see if Mike was going to be on board with this or not.

To my surprise, Mike gathered up the application papers, gave them a little tap on the table to straighten them and said, "Well, we'll fill out these forms, return them to you, and see you in November for the training."

With my eyes wide and my mouth on the floor, I could not believe my ears! What??  I mean I felt so confident that this day would come, I knew Mike's heart, I could hear it in the way he began to talk more frequently about children in need and how God was calling us to action, but somehow I was still taken by surprise. Silently praising God on the way to our car, I began to ask Mike, "Are you sure?? How sure are you?? I don't want you doing this for my sake! Are you sure?? I truly don't want to do this if you are not positive!"

Mike, patient with my barrage of doubtful questions, reassured me that he wouldn't have said what he said without meaning it.

Months went by, and we attended the required training. Then a few more months went by, and we began to go through the home study process. These months were hard for me, I was constantly battling Satan and his attacks on my faith. I struggled with doubt, worry, and fear. Through prayer and scripture and encouragement from friends, family, and fellow believers I would work to strengthen my faith in my God and His plan for our family. And God is so faithful, isn't He?? Just when I would be feeling my weakest, He'd provide comfort and reassurance.

I remember after a particularly well spoken sermon by our Pastor Keith, I wrote in my notes and later told Mike, "When I began to pride myself in patience, God gave me children. And when I began to pride myself in faith, God asked me to point my family towards foster care." You see, up until recently I was feeling truly comfortable with where we were in life. Our marriage just gets better and better with each passing day. We have three handsome and healthy sweet boys. Do we have problems? You bet! But our life was comfortable, and as the boys began to grow, we began to love the comfort.

I was afraid of sacrificing our comfort for uncertainty. "What if Mike and I began to argue more?" "What if our children have a hard time adjusting?" "What if we hate it?" Then I felt God interject, "I am asking you to step out of your comfort zone and into obedience." I think all too often it's tempting to stay right where we are, and then it hit me. Satan can use our comfort against us! He can allow us to enjoy our comfort so much, that we decide it's too risky to follow Jesus.

Kinda makes ya wonder, what would life look like if we gave everything over to God. If we said "Lord I trust you with everything, not just these things over here, but everything." God was asking me to trust him with my marriage, our beautiful family, and our comfortable life.

One Tuesday morning this past March I was with Benjamin, two close friends of mine, and their children. We were headed to the zoo, three mommas with their three boys! About an hour into the drive I missed a call from an unknown number and noticed a message from a caseworker that works at CYFD. "Hey Stefani, do you have a minute. Rachel needs to talk to you."

Assuming the unknown number was our caseworker, I returned the call.

"Hi, Rachel? This is Stefani."

"Hey Stefani!! You'll never believe this but we received your home study yesterday and you were approved, also we have a sweet 8 month old baby boy who needs a home."

1 comment

  1. Grandad would have loved to read your writings! Please continue! ;)


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