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Is There A Line to Your Door?

2011 November 16

One Tuesday evening in clubs the other Ranger, Nate, lifted one of the boys over his head and let him touch the ceiling. Right away Darin (not his real name) ran up to Nate and said excitedly, “Lift me up like that!”

Nate looked doubtfully at Darin. Darin was, well, a little on the heavy side. Because of a nagging neck problem Nate had to tell him he couldn’t lift him.

“I’ll do it, buddy,” I said, and his face lit up as he held his arms out so I could get a good grip under them.

Lifting Darin was a little demanding, but I managed. I held him up to the ceiling so he could touch it as I looked up at him. I was still looking at his smiling face as I lowered him down to the ground and about half way down, as my field of vision changed, I saw it.

There was a line of boys patiently waiting to be lifted up.

I had been volunteering for our church’s Kids’ Club for my third year as a Ranger (which is what the boys call their teachers) with the first graders. After the first year I thought about moving up with the same boys, but I’m glad I didn’t. I’ve gotten to know some great kids each year and now I know boys in each grade.

That third year was the time when we received the call to foster parenting. A couple years earlier we were considering adoption, having worked with children in a number of ministries we thought it might be fun to take some of them home with us. We soon became overwhelmed with the process and dropped the idea.

But God had other plans, and He used a number of ways to let us know what that was.

Jennifer and I attended a seminar at our church on finding your purpose and making it happen by one of our pastors, John Stanko, based on his book Life Is a Gold Mine. We’d also attended a later workshop, and a number of sermons by the same pastor that always ended with us asking each other, “Well, what are you thinking about?”

Finally, during pro-life month (January) Dr. Stanko delivered a sermon on being the solution. At the bottom of his sermon notes was the number of our Children’s Ministry Director, Gwen Kelley, for those interested in becoming foster parents. We couldn’t ignore the call any longer.

But how would we deal with the separation? Having a child in our home and then… not having that child?

Sometimes God sends someone to talk to you and sometimes He gives you a visual.

When I was putting Darin down and saw the line of boys behind him I knew we could do this. We would have to send kids back to their homes, let them return to their parents and trust God that what we did meant something.

But there would always be another kid waiting in line to be lifted up.

Photo: “Students” by Guillermo Ossa

8 Responses leave one →
  1. Michelle Goff permalink
    November 16, 2011

    Wonderful! I love reading what you have shared and look forward to the next posting. Thank you for what you and Jennifer are doing for those precious children.

    • November 17, 2011

      Thank you, Michelle. I’m so glad you stopped by.

  2. Gwen Kelley permalink
    November 16, 2011

    So excited for you and Jennifer, but mostly for the children that you are going to bless when you meet them!

    • November 17, 2011

      Thank you, Gwen. I think it’s safe to say you had a hand in this. 🙂

  3. November 16, 2011

    Brilliant, penetrating explication of the start of this life adventure. When you told me about this blog, I didn’t realize that you were doing and not just discussing!

    • November 17, 2011

      Thank you, Mark. Coming from a writer such as yourself that’s quite a nice compliment.

  4. November 17, 2011

    What a wonderful testimony on how you started this journey in fostering children. These kids that end up in foster care deserve loving homes as they eventually transition back to their families.

    • November 17, 2011

      Thank you, Blog Lady T. What I said to Mark goes for you too.

      And just so everyone knows, Tishrei did all the back work on this site just because she’s got a big heart.

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