I asked a friend to do a blog on their journey with Foster Care/Foster to Adopt. Here is her post!!!! Thank you so much Shanda!
Shanda and her family (currently)
When I was asked to be a guest blogger my heart raced y’all, I have 5 littles! My first thought was “How am I going to find the time??” I knew I wanted to share our story. I talk about it with anyone willing to listen, even people in the Walmart check-out line. I want people to care about foster kids, like deeply care. I want people to hurt for them, ache even. Not to the point that they just care with emotions, but with actions. Like give it all to God and live with abandon actions. You see-that’s what we did. Not because we are something amazing (we’re very ordinary), or because we’re rich (people often think it’s expensive, its not!), or because we have so much free time (we’re actually extremely busy), or because we’re great parents (we rely on the Lord to fill in all those many gaps)! There’s nothing different or special about us, except that we chose to follow the Lord’s calling on our life, and boy have we been blessed!
My husband, Julius, and I always knew we wanted to adopt. We had no idea what that would look like for our family and original plans included having a biological baby and adopting one. The Lord began to speak to me through sermons at church, billboards, radio hosts, He began stirring inside of me this passion for this journey that I never saw coming. We took the leap and went to a CPS informational meeting. It was no commitment, just come hear about it (these meetings can be found here https://www.dfps.state.tx.us/Adoption_and_Foster_Care/Get_Started/Information_Meetings/06.asp) . We went in thinking we would just adopt from CPS and left the meeting feeling the calling for foster care as well. Fast forward almost 4 years later-we have adopted two and have fostered 8 others. Our journey is much too long to share through out a one day blog post and has been such a roller coaster ride. The Lord has worked on my heart, my head, my soul, and every other part of the human body to tear it down and rebuild it up new. To show me to live for his Kingdom, not my own and to rely on his strength, most certainly not the little bit that I thought I had.
There are so many myths about foster care that I wish I could debunk here. The most common thing I hear is “We thought about fostering, but I couldn’t handle it when they go home. How do you do it?”. Let me just be frank-I want to really scream “HOW DO YOU NOT DO IT?”. We’re talking about kids being abused, homeless, hurt, hungry and traumatized, and you’re asking me about how I do it? How I live my comfortable life with everyday normal problems? I don’t-I invite the hurt inside to my very own home, I pray for strength for healing, for peace, for comfort, to make a difference, to make it through this second or the next, to have a heart like Jesus, to see these kids the way He sees them, to love them despite what it will cost me. DESPITE WHAT IT WILL COST ME. It’s not about me, it’s not about you, it’s about what the Lord has asked of you. If you feel that passion, the stirring, for caring for kids in need. Rather it be for foster care or adoption, get on your knees and pray. Pray that the Lord will show you what He has for you and will lead you down your own unique path according to His will.
I would love to answer any questions that you may have about fostering or adopting through CPS. I can be reached through FB messenger (Shanda Lewallen Karow) or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you haven’t seen the news, there is a crisis right now from shortage of homes. I won’t try to convince you that “the time is now” or “get busy today”! When you listen, the Lord will take care of the rest ☺.