It goes without saying that for quite some time conversations will linger regarding about how different 2020 has been. For many months, much has been out of the ordinary. Unanticipated changes have persisted. However, it is encouraging to hear people bring attention to things that have not changed: the steadfastness and unchanging grace of God, good emerging in spite of bad, and how people are doing remarkable things even in the midst of uncertainty and unforeseen challenges.
There are some things, unfortunately, that have not changed this year.
There are some things that have not been different.
Children are still being abruptly removed from their homes through no fault of their own.
Social workers are still in their offices on their phones at 2:00 a.m. trying desperately to find a family for a child to stay with.
Foster parents are still experiencing periods of loneliness and needing others to come alongside them and bear their unique burdens.
Children are still waiting to be adopted.
There are still teenagers who need someone who won’t give up on them no matter how complicated their story is.
Babies are still being born that are not going home with their biological parents and need families that can love and care for them no matter what medical challenges they’ve inherited.
Biological parents that are working hard to make changes in their lives and taking steps to be better parents are still in need of support.
Brothers and sisters are still being separated and sent to different locations because there are not enough foster homes for sibling groups.
Foster parents who already have children placed in their homes are still frequently getting phone calls asking them to take “just one more”.
It’s overwhelming to think about.
But we must.
And we cannot stop there.
There’s yet more that is worthy of our consideration.
More that has not been different this year and will not be in the next…
God’s heart still breaks when children made in His image are mistreated through abuse and neglect and experience trauma.
God still calls us to stand up for the vulnerable.
It is still true that those who have been entrusted with much should give much (our time, our abilities, our homes, our love).
Scripture still urges us to look out not only for our own interests, but also for the interests of others.
We can still do all things through Christ, even hard things, including being His hands and feet to children in foster care.
So much about this past year has been undeniably different,
but this remains the same:
Children in foster care still desperately need hope and help and refuge during their time of crisis and distress. And while it can look differently for each of us, it is still the Body of Christ that is called and best equipped to step in to their brokenness. May the coming year be different in that we love more, give more, pray more, and engage more on behalf of vulnerable children in foster care.