Slow to sacrifice - but now - fully surrendered.

Every morning I wake up to this.
An empty crib.
An empty crib ready to receive a newborn baby boy or a nine-month-old baby girl.
An empty crib ready to be filled on May 19th (when our training will be complete), or in six months when a baby needs a home.
An empty crib reminding me that I have sacrificed my only personal space in our home.
And the sacrifice was not easy.

I am an introvert living in a house with seven humans and a dog.
Three of those humans are children.
Three are teenage boys.
Only one of the six is an introvert.
My husband is an extrovert extraordinaire.
And the dog? He likes attention too.

For the first week after the crib was set up, I sat at the edge of our bed, staring at it.
"I will never be alone in this room again."
"I will never be able to sit on the bed and read a book in solitude."
"No more movie nights for me and Dennis."
"Our boys will not be able to come in for our late night discussions."
"This was the last place I could be alone. And now, it's gone."
"Lord? Why am I struggling with this so much?"

He was gracious to let me wrestle with the reality of the life we are willingly walking into.
He didn't solve it for me. He didn't even interrupt my thoughts. He just let me be me, witnessing my attempt to reconcile what I think I need and what I know I want with the unknowns of what will be.
It wasn't until a few weeks later, as I sat staring at the crib again, thinking the same thoughts again, that He finally intervened with a good shake of the shoulders and a loud, "Mi-CHELLE!" to get my attention. "Why are you struggling so much, daughter?"
an act of giving up something valued for the sake of something else regarded as more important or worthy

- time
- energy
- finances
- convenience
- sleep
- social events
- personal space
- peace
- privacy
- freedom

I willingly sacrifice all of these things for my own children.
I would sacrifice my life if the need called for it.
So I had to ask myself, "Am I willing to do the same for someone else's child?"
I didn't know it until that moment while staring at the empty crib, as the word sacrifice rolled around in my head, but the answer was simple. "Yes! I am willing!"

Every sacrifice made for these babies will be worth it.
Because ...
being a foster parent may be hard, but it's not as hard as being a foster child.

Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:3, 4

I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Romans 12:1

Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. Matthew 10:39