A beautiful gift that opened my eyes and affected my prayers.

The Lord has put it on the hearts of several individuals to join our family as we prepare to bring babies into our home. Baby clothes, a diaper bag, board books, monetary gifts, bottles, handmade items ... each one has been received with enthusiasm and gratitude, for we know we cannot do this alone!
Every time someone provides for these sweet babies we are reminded that the Lord knows our needs before we even ask, and He will be faithful to meet those needs.

Monday afternoon a large box was delivered to our door, with the return address bearing the name of some dear friends. Josiah, Isaiah, Ellie and I smiled and laughed as we pulled out each item, imagining babies wearing the tiny shoes and outfits and snuggling in the blankets. It was evident that our friends had fun shopping and we were thrilled with their choices!

The gifts made us smile.
The letter made me cry.

Dear Michelle, I pray you are all well!
As I had mentioned to you, the Lord just kept emphasizing Moses in the basket. That's why a basket is included in this package.
As we prayed over the little ones you will soon welcome in your home, our daughter got the idea to include her little book about Moses.
It is not a book we would normally gift as it is used and has some writing on the front page and some pages are a bit damaged at the bottom.
But I couldn't help to think, "Isn't this how the Lord accepts us?"
We are all a bit damaged. Some stains here and there, but it is what He deposits in us, the gift of salvation, that makes us righteous vessels to do His work!
When I pictured Moses in the basket I could see (because I know how the story ends) that the Lord had set apart that little boy and kept him safe right in the midst of his enemies, by His almighty power.
I don't know who these babies will be or how many will be sent to your family throughout the course of this journey, but however many, I will be praying that the Lord will bathe these littles in the prayers of faithful prayer warriors so that one day, they may deliver the message of salvation to their people, family or friends.
I'm also sending you a little prayer list that our daughter put together. I asked her, "If you were a baby, what would you want others to pray over you?"
I would love for others to commit to praying for you and your family, especially for these little babies! So that's what I kept imagining when I thought of Moses' basket. A basket full of prayers for the babies that will soon be housed under your roof and protection and nurture.
The Lord bless you and keep you in perfect peace.

Prayers for babies (written by a 9-year-old little girl)
1. That they grow up to know the Lord
2. That they will always have enough food in their homes
3. That the parents would get enough sleep at night
4. That the babies stay healthy and grow healthy

Friends, I have never once thought of Moses as a foster child. He was not an orphan, for his parents lived. Though he was willfully surrendered by his parents, not removed from their care, he would have been murdered had he stayed. His parents refused to let their baby die at the hands of Pharoah, yet still exercised tremendous faith by placing him in a river, hoping someone would see the basket and draw him out of the water. Through God's providence, the princess who found him returned him (unknowingly) to his mother, but for most of his life, he was cared for not by his own parents, but by another.

My friend was right. The Lord had set Moses apart and kept His protective hand over him, for when he was grown, he returned to his parents, his siblings, his people, and fulfilled the purpose God had for him.
Moses led God's people out of bondage and into freedom!

The "Moses theme" of my friend's gift is perfectly fitting for the foster care world.
It is also tragically beautiful.
Thousands and thousands of baskets, each with a foster baby, foster child, or foster teen tucked inside, float down the rivers of every state and every country - every day.
But there are not enough hands reaching from among the reeds to draw them out of the water.

Lord, You have not called every person to bring home a floating basket with a child inside of it. You have not called every person to adopt or foster a child. But You have called every one of us to visit orphans in their distress. So we ask You to show us HOW to visit. Is one called to weave the baskets while another is called to draw attention to the thousands floating in the water? Is one called to clothe the babies while another provides food and medical expenses for the teens? Is one called to bring the children home while another commits to financing the items needed for each child? Is one called to minister to the babies while another is called to minister to the one holding the babies? Lord! These are YOUR children! They were created by Your hand and they bear Your image. Protect them. Provide for them. Prepare the way for them as You did for Moses. Each basket may not contain a child who is going to change the world, but each basket contains a child who will make a difference in the lives of those who choose to love him. Please, Lord. Move the hearts of Your people to pray. As my sweet sister wrote, may there be a basket full of prayers floating beside every basket holding a baby so they will never know a day that isn't surrounded by Your name, Your love, Your affection, and Your grace. They are Yours, Lord. As Moses' parents placed their precious son in a river centuries ago, trusting You with his life, we surrender every foster baby, every foster child, and every foster teen to You now, knowing that You truly are ...
A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families… Psalm 68:5, 6

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