Have you seen The Trolls movie? Of course you have. Cause it’s a great movie! (And now it’s on Netflix! Bless you very much, fine folks at Netflix.) One of my favorite lines is: “Your confidence gives me strength!” I feel like that is generally the mantra for my life. But in reality, I think “Your crazy life gives me strength!” is a little more apt.
Here’s one crazy story that I remember so vividly, even though it happened about 15 years ago. There was a guest speaker at my church one day, and he talked about how it was so hard to be a parent, because you are not in control of what your kids choose to do with their lives. You can guide them, even push them, but at the end of the day, they choose the way they want to go. This man’s trial was that his son decided to join the military, which may not seem like a big deal. Except this was just two years after 9/11, so it was a massive leap of faith for him to truly Let Go and Let God take care of his son. He realized at this time how helpless and powerless he was as a parent, and as a child of God.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. (Prov. 3:5-6)
I cannot even tell you how much this family’s journey has given me peace. I can read all the right books, I can do all the “right things”, but I am still in control of pretty much nothing. This is such a liberating thought!
I have only been a foster parent for 3 years, and have only had 3 placements in that time. Our first placement lasted 13 months, our next one was 36 hours, and our latest one lasted 600 days, and then we were able to adopt our sweet boy, when he was 20 months old. We got him as a 3 day old nugget of pure gold. He lights up our lives, and his smiles give me strength!
I don’t foster because I just LOVE all the little children. I don’t foster because I am a saint. Because some days I barely like my own kids, and if you know me, you know I am not a saint. But we didstart fostering because we felt like it was our calling, and a mission for our whole family. There were 15,000 kids in foster care at the time we became interested in doing this. Now, 3 years later, we are at about 21,000 kids in Arizona alone.
You are not in control. Of anything. And certainly not of anyone. If you are wondering, or waiting for the right time, I am telling you that the time is now. To do Something. To get involved. To encourage and support families who are fostering. You can do something – because you are an awesome, beautiful, wonderful person! Is my confidence giving you strength???
If you have any questions or would like to chat – I would LOVE to connect with you!
Facebook: Jihae Watson (complete with FB Live about foster care!)