To the birth mother of a foster baby ...

Dear sister,

As I eagerly await the call for a baby who needs a temporary home, I cannot help but think of you.

I don’t know you.
I don’t know your name.
I don’t know your profession, your educational background, or your family.
I don't know your hobbies, your favorite holiday, or your favorite ice cream.
I don't know your greatest joy or your greatest sorrow.
We may have everything in common or share no interests.

But I know we share one thing ... the heart of a mother. ❤

I don’t know your story.
I don’t know why your baby isn't with you right now, or what you have to do so he can come home.
But I do know there is a danger in knowing only one part of a story.
Society assumes they know the "why" and "what" of your situation. It decides where the blame lies and makes judgments accordingly. All without knowing you.
But the truth is, even if we did know the whole story, every single detail, those facts should elicit compassion, empathy, and grace because all of us have a story. All of us need forgiveness. All of us need a second chance.
We have made mistakes. We have regrets. We carry burdens from the past that must be worked through and resolved, and some are easier to bear than others. We have wounds and scars made by those we love and thought we could trust, and some that were inflicted by perfect strangers.
None of us are whole. None of us are without flaw. And some of our most broken pieces are not because of things we have done, but because of things that have been done to us.

When I think about you I wonder, "Has anyone ever told you how valuable you are? Has anyone ever told you that you are beautiful? Has anyone ever told you that you are intelligent and can do anything if you work hard to accomplish your goal? Has anyone ever pointed out and praised your strengths? Has anyone ever asked you to share your deepest feelings and fears? Has anyone ever told you that you are worthy of love because you are you, not because of what you do or how you perform? And most importantly, I wonder if anyone has ever told you that you were fearfully and wonderfully made by an amazing God?"

I don’t know the circumstances that brought you to this place, but I know there is nothing you have done, nothing you have thought, nothing you have experienced that cannot be forgiven and redeemed by an amazing, loving, and forgiving God. 
I know what it is like to walk in shame, I know what it is to feel like you are "not enough," and I know too well the sting of rejection. But dear sister, none of those things have to define you. They may be part of your past, they may be part of your present, but they do not have to be your future or your legacy.

Though I have never had a child removed from my home, I did give birth to a lifeless son. I understand the pain, the deep sorrow, the questions, the confusion, and the fear of not having your child with you. But sister, your child lives! You have an opportunity that I will never have with my son. How I envy you! You have the chance to start fresh! You can follow your plan, surround yourself with people who will encourage and support you, ask for help, take classes, heal your body ... whatever may be needed ... and be reunited with your precious baby. ❤

Motherhood is overwhelming. Even in the best of circumstances, taking care of and raising children is one of the hardest jobs in the world. When circumstances are not the best, the difficulties are enhanced and the stressors are magnified. I imagine you feel like you are drowning with no one on land willing to pull you out of the water. But sister, as lonely as you might feel, and as unsupported as you might be, there is always someone ready to throw a life ring. They may not be in your family, in your friend group, or even in your community, but that is the beauty of the large world in which we live. You can reach out to a different community, a different group of people so they become your family, your friends, and your support.

I don’t know you, sweet birth mom, but I wish I did. I wish I could invite you into my home to sit on my couch while I hold your baby and listen to you share your story. I wish I could hold your hands, look you in the eye and tell you that you are valuable. That you matter. You matter because you were created by a loving God who molded you with His own hands for a purpose.
I wish I could hug you. I wish I could introduce you to other women who have walked where you now walk, to encourage you and give you hope that where you are right now - does not have to be your "forever."

I may never have the privilege of meeting you, but I am thankful I can still give you a fantastic gift without ever looking upon your sweet face. I can take you to the Throne of Grace where the God of heaven reigns, and where He invites His children to come before Him boldly with their requests!
I will pray for you.
I will pray for your baby and/or your children.
I will pray that the Lord surrounds you with people who want you to succeed and will be part of that success.
I will pray for your physical strength, your emotional strength, and for the Lord to meet your spiritual needs.
But, I think, my greatest prayer will be that the Lord will remove the dirty, cracked lenses through which you have been looking at yourself, and replace them with crystal clear lenses that show you the truth of who you are. You may not know Him, you may not want to know Him, but He knows you dear, sweet sister, and you are precious in His sight. ❤

The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; He delivers them from all their troubles.
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:17, 18