This is day 3 of the #Write31Days challenge. To read previous posts in the challenge you can go here. Do you listen to podcasts? If not you definitely need to start! I've only every listened to faith-based podcasts, but I've been hearing about all types of genres that I want to eventually give a shot. I'm not really sure how common this is, but once I find a podcast I like, I "binge listen" to it. And currently I am binge listening to Jamie Ivey's podcast, The Happy Hour! Jamie is just so real and I honestly feel like we're friends... sometimes I have to remind myself that she has no idea that I exist. And she is the reason that I'm participating in this writing challenge because she is doing a 31 day series on podcasting currently.
I only found her podcast about two or three weeks ago, but I'm already on episode number 27! I literally find myself laughing out loud while listening, I've also cried as her guests often share deeply moving and personal thoughts, and I always feel inspired after listening to an episode (or three).
I thought I'd share one of my favorite moments from The Happy Hour so far:
Episode 23 with Becca Harris & Maris Bush. This is the episode I've cried the hardest in. Like ugly cry. Both Becca and Maris are involved in the foster care system and have adopted children through that system.
First off I want to touch on the fact that before listening to this episode I clearly didn't know much about foster care. The number one and most important thing I didn't know about foster care is that the primary goal of foster care is reunification. I had never taken the time to really think about foster care, so I'm not even sure what I used to think, I was just simply unaware.
I feel like many people equate foster care with adoption and with terrible parents. But both Becca and Maris said otherwise; many of the parents are great people who unfortunately hit a rough patch but are working like crazy to get their children back. And while you do fall in love with the kids you are fostering, your prayer is that they can be reunited with their family, as heartbreaking as that can be for you.
Also let me preface this by saying that before I began listening to The Happy Hour I had never been challenged to really consider adoption. Pretty early on, one of the guests or perhaps Jamie herself described how badly she wanted to adopt but her husband wasn't on board yet. BUT GOD, in His perfect timing, gave her husband an experience one day allowing him to feel what it was like to be an orphan. For a moment or two it was like God let him experience how heartbreaking it is to be an orphan. I'm sitting in a Panera right now typing this trying not to cry because when that was shared I didn't think much of it, but while listening to Becca and Maris, it finally hit me. And that's when the ugly cry started.
Maris was talking about two little girls that she fostered and just fell in love with. She only had them for forty days, but she could barely keep it together on the podcast as she recounted the experiences she had with those girls who had been reunited with their family ten days prior to recording the podcast. Jamie asked Maris what it was like the day they had to give the girls back so they could go home because Maris and her husband were a representation of the gospel that day to the family of these little girls.
I just wanted [the family] to know that they were loved, that they were absolutely loved like crazy from the moment they stepped in our [lives]. And wouldn't you want that for your kids, to know that a family loved your kids when they've been in a really tough spot? And so they were extremely grateful and they saw the pain that we had sending them back . . . I'm like how many tears do I have in me? Like how long can I keep doing this? But that's a time where we can go back to scripture, and Isaiah 58 says that He will meet us in our scorched places, and right now there are parts of my heart that feel scorched because I have literally poured myself out for these kids and they are gone and I'll probably never see them again. But I have to believe that when we do those things, when we love kids in hard places, He is going to bring peace to our hearts, we'll be like a well-watered garden when we pour ourselves out for these kids who need these things and most days I'm fine, and can look in the mirror and be like 'I'm okay I'm really okay, I'm fine.' I do cry some but I'm okay, and wasn't it worth it to pour myself out for these kids and love these kids? I'm an adult, I'm fine and can do this. I just have to believe that God's gonna keep restoring me when I am stepping out there and doing things for the gospel. I have to really believe that He's going to restore me in that.
I'm sorry for such a long quote but I just LOVE it! Jamie went on to talk about having our perspective on eternity; we're only here for approximately 80 short years. That's barely a noticeable blip on the radar. Do we just want to live an easy life and gain nothing from it? If you lose your life on earth, you'll gain eternal life. And you definitely have to lose some things when you foster children. You lose time, money, you suddenly have to have certified baby sitters, but in the end it's SO worth it.
I have no idea what is in my future. I just know that I want to pour my life out for the Lord! I want to feel like I gave everything I had to give in the areas where God called me when I get to the end of my life!
Be sure to come back tomorrow! I'll be talking about my never-ending journey to get closer to the cross!