In considering adoption or fostering I really believed that only special people are called and equipped to foster or adopt. And, I mean, how can you love a child you did not conceive and carry in the same way you love and care for your own flesh and blood???
I have never really fully entertained the idea because I didn't really think it was possible to feel real, deep feelings for a child that was not your own. You hear stories, sure, of people visiting another country and claiming to KNOW as soon as they laid eyes on a child that he/she was THE child for them...that they fell in love immediately. But I wanted to have my own 4th child. My flesh and blood. There is something about carrying and giving birth to a child and there is a special bond that takes place as you raise and love and nurture your child...how could a person actually experience anything like that with a child not their own???
I worried that it was not possible for me to find a child that produced the joy and love and fulfillment that I so desperately want.
We had the opportunity to have a couple of block parties in front of Casa Alcance with the neighborhood children. So many kiddos came to play. But there was one in particular that I fell in love with from the very beginning. A 9 year-old named Hassiel. Oh my gosh - her smile, her eyes, her feisty personality! I am literally in love with that child! Let's be clear, I am quite certain that she is not in need of being adopted but that is not the point.
Here's the point and the thing that God spoke to me after our trip...His love and His grace makes a way. It is possible to fall in love with a child that you did not personally give birth to. And how many children are there around this world who have no one on this Earth to love them. It doesn't take a special person with special love to adopt or foster - it takes someone who is willing to be used by God, someone who is willing to be obedient, someone who is willing to be a channel of God's love and grace. He equips those He calls...but in reality, it is not a chosen few who are called to love, we are all called to love. And if God has placed a desire in my heart to parent a 4th child - who am I to doubt that, who am I to shy away from it, who am I to question whether or not I could love "someone else's child"??? It's not someone else's child - it is God's child and He needs people who are willing to care for and love on and raise each one of them.
Hassiel opened my eyes to the reality that when I am obedient, when I am willing to put myself smack dab in the middle of God's plan for my life - He will equip me and give me the grace to accomplish any and every task He has planned for me. AND I can love a child -to the core of my being- that I did not personally conceive, carry and give birth to!
I don't know exactly how this plays out detail by detail but I know God and I am so thankful that He teaches us and guides us in such a sweet and loving way. He used a precious Peruvian girl to teach me more about Him and about love. I don't know the details about if/when/how we will foster or adopt but it is a seed within me that is growing...