I went to a woman's event at church last night. A lady shared her testimony of aging out of foster care, after being horrifically beaten and neglected for years. "Aging out" is going your entire chooldhood from house to house, never being adopted by a family. She has since started an organization "Big Family of Michigan" that supplies for all kinds of needs for those kids in the system who often get overlooked. Some foster kids have never celebrated a birthday, some don't have school supplies, some start adulthood with no clothes, job, home, parents to call for help. These are just a few of the many things I have been blessed with my whole life and can easily be taken for granted. Thank you Jesus for the ways you have blessed me. But what I am realizing more and more, every day we are blessed, to be a blessing.
The speaker then told the story of a young boy named Stefan. He has been in the foster care system a long time. She said he celebrated his first birthday at 9 years old through provisions supplied by their organization. Once a year the state has an adoption fair. A lot of the foster kids go in hopes they will get a family. She said Stefan goes to the fair every year hoping he will get adopted. The fair was last week, at 17 years old he is still going in hopes a family will chose him. It has not happened yet. Broke my heart. Although I truly wanted my heart to be broken for the things of God, I did not expect this. I do not know what I thought it would feel like. Feeling the very heart of God, breaking with what breaks his. God loves Stefan. God loves the orphan, the widow, the helpless and oppressed. My heart was stirred last night in a way it has never been stirred before. Compassion for the orphan. I want to ask you to pray for Stefan to have a revelation of the love of God and to find a family that he can belong to, celebrate Christmas with, stand with him as he goes through the hard things in life.
I did not know what I was signing up for, when I prayed for a heart that breaks like His does. Through the brokenness, however, God is showing me as I have been blessed, to bless others. That looks different for every family. Some can donate time, money, supplies, others have a place in their homes for orphans. I was encouraged last night to begin seeking out how God wants our family to get involved in blessing others. And I was reminded of his amazing grace in my life once more. I may not have signed up for this, but I wouldn't change my prayer. True compassion spurs action.
These are two local, Michigan organizations that support foster children. Sawyer's run was started by a new, but dear friend to me, Jenny. She has a heart for the orphan and I am so thankful God brought us together. I hope you have a check out their sites and pray for these organizations ask they seek to help those in need!http://www.sawyersrun.org/