Yesterday I sat for most of the afternoon, tears streaming down my face; my heart was broken as I looked into the eyes of this beautiful baby boy. The appointment was earlier that day and as much as I had suspected the confirmation of what he is dealing with and the struggles he will have to overcome wrenched my heart. I didn’t know it was possible to love someone else’s children the way I love them. How fiercely I was ready to advocate for them, move mountains to get them everything they need, and be their constant in a journey that was ever changing. It was an unconditional love, just as I love my own children. It was a compassionate love, empathetic love, a without boundaries or fear love. Becoming a foster mom has showed me the love of Christ in a way I have never experienced.
It is amazing when God delivers revelation in an experiential way. Sunday as I sat in church listening to the message regarding grace the Holy Spirit began bringing to mind the realness of God’s gift of grace. When I look at these children I am fostering, my love is given freely, and I have provided for them everything they need. But because they have not experienced such a love before: safe, protected, and without condition; it is hard for them to accept it fully and without guard. They don’t think I know them enough to love them, I have only just came into their life. Yet, I know what they have been through, and I know what they need to be fulfilled and progress. Regardless if they understand it, or have a bad day, or aren’t “normal” because of the cards they have been dealt, my love for them doesn’t change. If they have a tough day or rough night, if they act on displaced anger towards me for things they don’t understand, regardless of performance, my love for them is not impacted. Yet, because it is so different, because of their experience with people, it will take time to fully embrace the fullness of my love. The love I offer is free, it doesn’t require anything, and the closer they come to accepting it, the stronger they become and the further they will progress.
I can’t force them to accept my love, I can only show them through a constant, unchanging presence.
This is when I realized I am emulating the love of Christ. I sat in awe, as I realized that the Holy Spirit was revealing to me how God loves us. It is without condition, free, not based on performance, and without bounds. His grace is an offering unlike anything we have experienced and it is hard for us to understand and even accept in its fullness. God isn’t angry at us when we act out based on things we have been through. He isn’t upset when we harbor displaced anger blaming God because we don’t know who else to blame. God knows us, deeply and intimately, and wants us to succeed. He desperately wants us to accept His love because He knows how much better life will be when we do. Yet, He doesn’t force it on us, as genuine love is not ever by force. His compassion in knowing us far exceeds anything we can possibly understand.
How amazing is our God? How incredible to truly grasp that His love really is given without condition. He doesn’t need us to perform for Him, He loves us on the days we are just us, without any bells or whistles. The freedom that comes with accepting His love and fullness of His grace is unmatched and the peace and joy we experience when we surrender our understanding to His. Praise God for such an amazing revelation. Praise God for allowing me this opportunity to emulate the love of Christ in such an impactful way that it blesses my life, my children’s’ lives, and my new bonus children as well. God is truly so good and His ways are so much better than ours. The journey continues…