A few years ago in a packed-out auditorium, I joined in petitioning God for revival and opening ourselves to be used by Him. We were one people crying out - bold and unified - yet the loud prayers leaving our lips were deeply personal. I found myself joining in with a wholehearted cry of ‘yes’ unto the Lord. It was a full surrender to Love, out of love, and a yes to whatever He might ask. It came from the depth of my spirit, prompted by His Spirit, the Holy Spirit of God who searches and knows all things. I didn’t know all that He had in mind at the time, but I knew He was calling me into a deeper level of love, and surrender, and into a higher level of trust. I sensed that my yes was essential to God’s will being done in me, and then, through me to the world around me.
Today, this cry of yes is being carried out most significantly by giving of myself and our home to children in need. My husband John and I have said yes to welcoming in little ones who need shelter and peace. We’re providing a place for healing and restoration through the work of love done through foster-parenting. This yes was brought to the surface while reading Scripture like James 1:27 which says, “Real, true religion from God the Father’s perspective is about caring for the orphans and widows who suffer needlessly and resisting the evil influence of the world” (The Voice). This yes was stirred through years of nighttime dreams of nurturing and protecting children. It’s a yes that was confirmed through encouraging prophetic words and tender Holy Spirit whispers. According to Ephesians 2:10, this story of our yes began before we were born, when God wrote out His good plans for our life. The time for its fulfillment is now. As the end-time harvest is being made ready to be brought in, now is the time for many of us who follow Jesus to step into this part of our story and deeply impact the next generation for the Kingdom of God. Now is the time to do the work that God has written for us. Now is the time to answer with a deeply resounding and wholehearted - yes!
In Micah 6:8, we read what God wants from us: “He has told you, O man, what is good—and what does the Lord require of you, but to do justice and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” (MEV). In Isaiah 1:17, God says, “Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows” (NLT). God is a God of justice. He rights wrongs and helps people in need, and He does this work through you and me.
As we open our heart to the Lord and surrender our all to Him, and as we become ones whom He can entrust with the close matters of His heart, He shares His burden and causes us to grieve, intercede, and give our lives for people in need. He awakens us to a love that He’s already placed inside, so we can give it to the ones He wants us to care for in His name. He sets into motion the work that He's predestined us to do, as we pick up our cross and follow Him. And Jesus joins us in the work as we give our life away, ever looking forward to the joy of eternity together.
Children in hard circumstances, and their families too, are on the heart of God. They are a part of the harvest that the Lord longs to bring in to be with Him forever. He is waiting for us to be willing and obedient to the call that He’s placed on our lives from our very beginning.
If you have a desire to help children in need, or perhaps, like me, you feel like your work of mothering or fathering is just not yet done, then this message is for you. Now is the time that your yes is needed! The Lord is returning sooner than we think and we must say yes to the call to care for the child in need, to help bring in the harvest of people who are precious to God.
What does the Lord have to say about little ones who are in danger and in need? He is a “Father to the fatherless, defender of widows—this is God, whose dwelling is holy. God places the lonely in families; he sets the prisoners free and gives them joy. But he makes the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land” (Psalm 68:5-6). The Lord places the lonely in families, but we, Christian families, have to be open, willing, and ready to receive. If we really are His hands, His feet, and the way the Father walks out His plans and purposes on the earth, then we must say yes to the call. We must respond to the need.
Foster-care is one way to help bring about justice and care for the child in need. Yes, the system is flawed, but if we don’t step in to meet the need, then who will? Who will help restore, redeem, and set these children on a course to everlasting life? Who will plant the seeds of eternity?
As I’m rocking to sleep one of the little ones who is precious to Jesus and praying over her, I’m realizing the recurring God-given nighttime dream of nurturing babies and how it is being fulfilled. As I’m sitting on the floor playing and singing with the little one that Jesus has brought to our door, I feel God near, singing over me, delivering strength, love, and resilience. And I hear Holy Spirit reminding me of the words of Jesus: “Let the little children come to Me” (Matt. 19:14). Jesus said, “If anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward” (Matt. 10:42, NIV). Truly, this quiet, mostly unseen work of caring for a child in need is near and dear to the heart of God.
If He’s calling you to this work, will you give your yes to the Lord, because you love Him so...because He loved you so.
Yes, there will be a cost in the trade. But when we exchange leading our own life, for giving our life in service to the King, there will also be a rich and great reward.
Jesus said, “Follow Me” and “Pick up your cross.” He said, “For anyone who keeps his life for himself shall lose it; and anyone who loses his life for me shall find it again. What profit is there if you gain the whole world—and lose eternal life? What can be compared with the value of eternal life? For I, the Son of Mankind, shall come with my angels in the glory of my Father and judge each person according to his deeds” (Matt. 16:25-27, GNT).
Please join me in praying.
You are more than worthy of my wholehearted surrender and yes.
Because of You, Jesus, I’m able to die to my flesh and truly come alive and live for You. I give my yes to all that You ask or require. Because You loved me first, I love You, trust You, and live for You.
Help me bring justice to children in need by doing my part. Show me the eternal work that You would have me to do. Help me step out of the comfort of the norm and courageously lay down my life for You. Stir up eternity in me. This lasting work is unto You.
Lord, send more laborers into Your field to care for and bring in the harvest. Make us a beautiful bride, ready for Your return.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.
To learn more about foster parenting, visit onemorechild.org