*read to the end for an opportunity to serve both foster care and international adoption
Jaiden is growing up fast, y'all.
We took his crib apart a couple of weeks ago and moved him into a big bed. It was honestly a little heartbreaking... and heart-moving.
Two and half years ago this crib was donated to us by a church in Slidell. They requested only that we donate it back to bless another foster family when we didn't need it anymore.
And somehow, here we are... two and a half years later and the sentimental side of me is having a very hard time letting go of it. But the incredibly blessed foster mom side of me can't wait to know that another little baby is resting safely and peacefully in it.
The simple task of moving Jaiden out of his crib has brought up a lot of different emotions... but one in particular is all about what and who our Family is. We are so grateful for the people all over this country who have revealed very concretely our place in their family, the Family of God. This is evident in how our lives have played out over the last four and a half years, and how they continue to play out each and every day.
We would not have made it through the NICU or foster care without family.
And here's who I have come to understand family to be:
- the hundreds of family, friends, and strangers to whom I wrote thank you notes during and after Mercy's seven week stay in the NICU
- the strangers in grocery stores and restaurants who knew just by looking at her in those first months home that they needed to approach us and share the hope of their own prematurity stories
- the gifted cooks who provided us with months of dinners after she was born and again after Jaiden came to live with us
- the people who had never laid eyes on Jaiden, but showered him with Christmas gifts just days after he came to our home
- the families who walked the NICU and foster care journeys before us, giving us wisdom, prayer, love and support and the families who walked these journeys beside us, holding our hands, crying with us, praying with us
- the people who step in to make it possible for me to be involved in the youth ministry as a mom of two young children
- the people who step in to watch the kids so that Chris and I can spend time alone together and maintain a healthy marriage
- the friends who have walked similar paths with children who share unique traits with our children
- anonymous gift-givers who leave us unexpected gifts at just the right time, tears of gratitude pouring for the endless grace of God revealed so concretely
- our church body, including the students in our youth ministry, who have walked with us each day, praying constantly for every member of our family, supporting us in ways I could never put into words, and loving us to no end
- the eternal community both inside and outside of our locality, designed by God, consisting of His children who have never ceased to love us, support us, lift us up, point us toward Him, and bless us beyond measure. Yes, we live far from our parents, sisters, grandmothers, aunts, uncles and cousins... but friends, we are closely surrounded by God's eternal family.
Let me reiterate: We would not have made it through the NICU or foster care without the family of believers God placed in and around our lives over the last four and a half years.
It is truly remarkable to look back on the impact the members of the family of God have had on us as their love has and is continually pouring over us and filling us from the endless flow of grace they have received in Christ.
Brothers and sisters, we have been given a gift.
Not a material gift but an eternal gift. A completely free gift that could never be earned or repaid.
"For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 6:23)
From this gift an outpouring of love flows from those whom He has called.
We are so very grateful for all those who have answered the call to love us unconditionally throughout our lives. We are incredibly grateful for the opportunities God gives us to love His family.
And finally, I'm grateful to have this platform to share an opportunity for YOU to love part of your family today.
Seamus and Laura Loman are part of your eternal family and mine, members of our local church, and partners in the adoption community.
Please love and support this family in unceasing prayer. I have never walked the road of international adoption but I know it is long, emotional, costly, faith building and refining.
If you feel called to financially support this sweet family as they work to bring home their third child from China, please consider this opportunity:
THIS RAFFLE HAS ENDED.
If you're interested in supporting the Loman's adoption through other means, please visit their adoption Facebook page: facebook.com/LomanAdoption
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. (1 John 4:7-12)