Sunday, August 28, 2011

Second Chances

He was malnourished. She was sick. They took her to witch doctors. They left him at the orphanage for years. The Dad can't hold a job. The mother is HIV+.

It's HARD to return kids you love to these situations. It sucks. All you want to do is hold onto that baby tight and never let them go. You don't want to trust their parents- they've messed up once and they'll mess up again. You don't want to trust God when he whispers in your ear that these babies deserve a chance to live in their homes. You ignore His gift of grace- extended to you and longing to reach those families too. God is working in you, calling you to extend his grace to those families. To give them second chances. And all you want to do is yell no and take all those babies home with you.

You don't want to stop and wonder if he was malnourished because they didn't have money for food. If she was sick because they couldn't get medical care. If they took her to witch doctors because they figured that was better than watching their baby die. If they left him at the orphanage because they doubted they could give him more than the orphanage could. If he can't hold a job because jobs are disappearing all around Uganda. If she could get ARVs and still be able to care for her baby.

You don't want to stop and realize that you are no better than them. That you are a sinful human being that God has poured his grace over time and time again. That you have never faced these hardships and you have no idea if you would make the same choices.

That his mercies are new every morning. For you and for them.

Because is we stop and realize all these things and give these families a second chance we will be blown away. We will see kids transformed into happy, attached, and well-adjusted kids. We will see parents doing everything they can to give their child a good life. We will see families built and grown.

We will see images like these:


Now sometimes these second chances don't work. We have had to remove kids from their homes because their caregivers aren't committed to them. They don't love and care for them even when given the ability to do so. And sometimes second chances can't be extended because of blatant neglect or abuse. Those situations do happen and when they do the child should absolutely be removed from the home or not returned to it to begin with. BUT we're finding this is rare. We are finding a majority of families love their kids and when given the means care for them wonderfully. And we can't let the minority where it doesn't work out cloud our vision so that we don't give the majority a chance at living in their homes with their families.

Families deserve a second chance... because every child deserves a chance with their family.

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