The next phase of orphan care...

 When considering the economical famine we seem to have been stuck in for several years, it is outright amazing that the number of families involved in adoption and foster care has skyrocketed. It can only be a testament to God's grace that so many families are responding to a Biblical calling to orphan care. 

In droves, people are seeking to adopt children with no families, rights, or voice.  

In swarms, people are opening up their hearts and homes to deep places of vulnerability through fostering children and teenagers in crisis.  

And as these families/single moms are up to their necks in parenting kids who are from really hard places, what's left is that there is an overwhelming need to support, love, and educate them as they strive to love their children well.  

Hey, look. I'm an adoptive mama, and though I spare you the nitty gritty, I'll be the first to say that this is hard. Parenting in general is just hard, and when you add on the baggage that some of our kids have on their shoulders, it's beyond messy. But the good news is, there are so many resources right here in Birmingham who can help support and educate families involved in these types of orphan care.  

THIS is why some mamafriends and I have been working to bring a special retreat for foster and adoptive moms to our city. There is a huge population in Birmingham of moms who are committed to loving and standing in the gap for kids who have been hurt, abandoned, or rejected. We are so passionate about pouring into these precious ladies who deal with some highly unique junk on a daily basis. Not just the typical parenting-is-hard (and it is), but the very specific flavors of hard that only foster and adoptive mamas can understand. 

There will be something so powerful about just being in the same room as 100 other women who get each other and are on the same journey of faith.  

There will be something so sweet about singing songs of worship alongside these women who have a very unique and personal understanding of what it means to wait on the Lord. 

There will be something so profound about helping these moms learn from one another and from those we have selected as speakers. 

Our fun little team of four has worn out our iPhones planning this retreat. We've laughed and dreamed and planned and prayed and written and unwritten together. It has been so fun to pour into the details of an event that hits so close to home: loving and supporting and educating mamas who are as passionate about showing God's love to orphaned and vulnerable children. 

I firmly believe that one of the greatest notches in the legacy of our generation is the voluminous response to God's calling to care for orphans. It's beautifully logical that the next phase of the Lord's development of us as a loving people is to nurture those families who are responding to the call. 

If you're an adoptive or foster mama in the Birmingham area, you just can't miss this retreat. Know that our little team loves you and is regularly praying for you, and we can't wait to be together in September!