Friday, June 20, 2014

Moving on...

This week, we helped move our precious five year old and our adventurous four year old into their new home.  For four months, they were ours.  For four months, our home was changed. For four months, we were reminded that the world did not revolve around us... that there are more important things in life.  For four months, my  older children got to see a glimpse of a different, harder life and what it really means to sacrifice for someone else.  For four months, our home was turned upside down.  I can honestly say that it was totally worth it.  Our family learned several valuable lessons, some of which I don't think we'll fully realize until later.  As the little children move on in the home where they are supposed to be, I realize how none of it is accidental.  They are moving into a home with a sweet Christian couple who have prayed for, waited, and hoped to be able to care for children.  They are in a home where the only other "children" are horses that they get to care for.  They have transitioned beautifully into the place that will prayerfully be their forever home.  And although I believe that, part of me can't help but wonder... did I love them enough?  Was four months enough time to teach them that they're important, they're loved, and they're incredibly special?  If you are one of the few people that read this, consider saying a prayer for this sweet family that have unselfishly opened their hearts and home to these two children.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Tooth Fairies and Pineapples

Never underestimate the simple things. This past week, we got to see some new experiences through the eyes of these sweet children. My little 5 year old lost a tooth. It wasn't her first tooth and she pulled this one herself. We were very proud of her for being brave and doing it herself. I mentioned that she needed to save it for the tooth fairy. She looked at me and asked, "What is a tooth fairy?" Now understand, I'm not suggesting that the tooth fairy is important in the big scheme of things. But watching her face light up when she woke up and saw the $1 in place of her tooth was priceless. She was so proud of that dollar. She insisted on taking it to school and buying stickers (which she proudly displayed on all her folders).
This week, my sweet neighbor gave us a pineapple. She probably had no idea the excitement one simple gift would bring. The two smaller kids were very curious and interested in the spiky fruit sitting on our counter. I explained that it was a pineapple. It didn't take long to realize that they had never seen a whole pineapple before. They've eaten it out of a can, but never knew what it looked like whole. Even though it's just a pineapple, it has turned into a special occasion. This evening, we plan on cutting the pineapple and eating it with dinner. They are acting like this is a big deal.  
Who knew one dollar and a whole pineapple could be so much fun? I'm thankful we get to experience this with these two sweet kids. Never underestimate the simple things.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

If not us... then who?

Lots of people say think we're crazy and most of the time I believe them. We don't have enough time, patience, money, or room to be foster parents... We already have four kids, why do we think we can handle more. I'm not going to lie, the past two weeks have been challenging. Chaos is probably a better word for it. But this morning, I watched a 3 year old boy (that we've known for only 2 weeks) crawl under my husband's arm and say, "Daddy, protect me." I watched my husband wrap his arm around him and quietly reassure him that he would protect him.
We might not be perfect parents. We might not be independently wealthy.  My four kids might have to deal with some extra challenges and inconveniences of two additional children. But if it's one thing my sweet husband and this 3 year boy reminded me is that these scared, unsure children are desperately seeking two main things: love and protection.
I think that's what makes my husband a real man... a man who would be willing to deal with the chaos, inconvenience, and challenges of foster care to offer this little guy and his sister two things they need: love and protection. If not us... then who will?

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Wholly Committed

We've been through it once already.  You would think it would be easier this time.  However, the training to become an approved foster home isn't about convenience.  Listening to all the stories and potential difficult situations we must prepare for can be alarming (even if we've heard them before).  The difference this time around has been our resolve.  Joey and I know it can and will be hard.  We know that some of our friends and our family may think we are crazy.  We know it's going to be chaotic and messy and full of interruptions and disappointment. So why are we going to do foster care?

When Faith first came to our home at the end of September 2010, she had little knowledge of what steps we had to go through to bring her home.  I'm sure someone may have explained the process to her, but seeing it from this perspective is completely different.  As Joey and I were sitting in one of our four hour training sessions last week, my sweet 18 year old daughter sent me a simple text, "Is it worth it?" 

As I look back and read where we were almost three years ago, I am amazed at God's fingerprints in our lives.  Love compels us and His power enables us.  The reason we are putting ourselves and our family through the  laborious process of becoming a foster home is simply because He asked.  Our reason three years ago still resonates deep with us today. (see below)

From August 24, 2010

Recently I was driving in my car.  I was headed home and thinking about the whole adoption process.  I'm not going to lie, it can be very frustrating.  We are constantly waiting.  Hurry up and wait, hurry up and wait.  Just when I think we are getting close to the end, the time frame stretches longer and longer.  Anyway, I was driving in my car and one of my favorite songs came on, "For the Sake of the Call" by Steven Curtis Chapman.   There is a part in the song that says,

We will abandon it all for the sake of the call
No other reason at all but the sake of the call
Wholly devoted to live and to die

Not for the sake of a creed or a cause
Not for a dream or a promise
Simply because it is Jesus who called
And if we believe we'll obey

It hit me how hard this whole journey is going to be. But we didn't do it for a dream or a promise that we would have a perfect little family. Being foster/adoptive parents, we have to abandon everything (my comfort level, my fears, my time plan, my convenience, my perception of a perfect family, even the approval of our friends and family). We abandon everything simply because he called. No other reason. If you're like me then lots of people will say, "Well, if God is calling you to do this, then I'm sure everything will be fine." I'm learning that is not true. We don't do things on the promise that situations will be easy or "fine"... we are simply doing this because he called us to. I'd like to think that we are brave for doing that. No, things will definitely be hard.  Just like the disciples faced a hard life by following Christ, our lives are changed significantly by making that same choice. Our choice will affect our close friends and our family. But like the song says,

Nobody stood and applauded them
So they knew from the start
This road would not lead to fame
All they really knew for sure
Was Jesus had called to them
He said "come follow Me" and they came
With reckless abandon, they came

Empty nets lying there at the water's edge
Told a story that few could believe
And none could explain
How some crazy fisherman agreed to go where Jesus went
With no thought to what they would gain
For Jesus had called them by name
And they answered...

We will abandon it all for the sake of the call
No other reason at all but the sake of the call
Wholly devoted to live and to die for the sake of the call
The sake of the call

Drawn like the rivers are drawn to the sea
There's no turning back, for the water cannot help but flow
Once we hear the Savior's call, we'll follow wherever He leads
Because of the love He has shown
And because He has called us to go
We will answer...

About the McGuire's

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Fort Worth, Texas
Six people... one great adventure. A family's mission to live life with faith and love for other people.