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As part of the process to get licensed for foster care we've filled out a lot of paperwork. We've gotten our fingers printed and our backgrounds checked. We've filled out more paperwork. We've made and procured copies of a lot of legal documents. We've filled out more paperwork. We've met with social workers and attended classes. And we've filled out even more paperwork. And we're nearly done. The last thing we need to do is put up a crib.

It didn't have to be the last thing. We could have put it up at any point in this process. But it's the last for us. It's so tangible to me. More so than all the papers and the fingerprints and the enormous binder of resources. It's the biggest monstrosity of proof that we are taking a giant leap of faith.

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When someone uses the phrase leap of faith I don't usually make a mental picture of what that looks like. If I did, I would see myself jumping off from a great height into the air. The middle of that leap is where I am suspended in this picture. My eyes squeezed closed and my head turned to the side to protect from what is coming. My arms and palms outstretched in front of me with elbows bent to act as a spring against whatever substance will come after the air. I don't know what that will be. Will it be a giant bed of boulders? Will it be a pool filled with jello? Will it be a field of thorns? Or will it be a soft and welcoming featherbed? How will I land after this leap?

I feel a bit like Noah. He started building that boat at the behest of God Himself. He sawed and hammered and constructed (or used whatever tools he had on hand). And then he waited. He waited for all the animals to climb onto his boat. He waited for his family to show up. And then he waited for the rains to come and carry his boat through the water. He took a giant leap of faith that this boat would not be built for nothing.

This is what I am also hoping and praying as I leap through the air. As I put this crib together and cover the mattress with a tiny, new sheet. That it won't be for nothing. That rather than sitting empty there will be a little baby in this crib. Maybe it will be filled with one or two or three foster babies who come and stay for a short time or a long time. Maybe it will be filled by a small child adopted into a forever home. Maybe it will be filled with a tiny baby that finally comes to life from my reluctant body. Maybe it will be filled by a baby that stays so long with us that it outgrows this crib and we take the leap of faith to put up a toddler bed.

It feels backwards to have a crib before the baby. Most parents put up the crib once they know a baby is coming. The preparations come with the baby. Instead we're preparing our mind and our hearts and our home with faith that a baby will come.

But isn't that the way for all people? For anyone who is wishing or dreaming or hoping for something? Isn't this the way for any parent, whether they're waiting for a baby, or watching a child as they grow, or sending their grown children out into the world? We take a leap of faith that our prayers will be answered and our hopes and dreams fulfilled. I pray that rather than leaping and falling hard, we will leap and find a place of comfort and joy. That we will test our faith in God and we will get an answer. I have faith this crib will not stay empty.

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Posted in Other Home Post Date 01/28/2017


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