The Little Things
We've been socially distancing at church for a couple weeks now. At first, I considered childcare and in person church going hand-in-hand. Both had to happen if I was going because my 2.5 year old in the church service wouldn't work. But after hearing other people's opinions and talking it over with the husband, we decided to try it out. The worst scenario being have to leave 5 minutes into the service.
Now, after a couple weeks, I've enjoyed it. Yes, she's wiggly. Yes, I am not retaining as much as I could (but I wasn't retaining anything while at home worshiping). Yes, she will be going to the church nursery once it opens again. However, my wiggly little one has learned at church too. Let me tell you about it.
We pray with her through out the day, the most common times being at bedtime and before meals. I knew it was becoming a habit to her because we'd sit down to the table and she would fold her hands and say "pray!" My husband and I are very habitual people - we've realized even more with kids that we are. Anyway, in church this past week, the pastor mentioned the word "pray" in his sermon and immediately she folded her hands and looked me in the eyes and said "pray." I was surprised! I didn't think she was listening to the pastor because she was reading her book on my lap. But she heard his words. It was at that moment I remembered my job as a parent (even though it's only been three months in her life) happens day by day and moment by moment. Even the small habitual things we do with them is leading them in the right direction.
As a foster parent, we can get easily overwhelmed by all the things the kids need done for them - they need speech because they aren't developing correctly, they need the proper diet because they have been malnourished, they need love because they are acting out, they need discipline because they didn't have rules before, etc... All of which are important to instill when they arrive in our home. But it still gets overwhelming when it all hits you at once. Now, three months since she arrived in our home, I can look back and see that we are in fact making a difference in her life. I knew good change happens, we had a sibling set for 9 months in 2019, but it's hard to remember when you're in the trenches of it.
As we were standing for worship at the beginning of the sermon on Sunday, I held her on my hip and sang the music to her. My heart began to wander as I thought about her future. We don't know how long she'll be with us, but I prayed that she would come to know the Lord as her own. At that point in my prayer, I looked down at her. She raised both her hands into the air and sang her heart out. I couldn't hold back the tears. It was as if the Lord was speaking directly to my heart and reminded me that this child was His to protect.
It may seem mundane and pointless, but my foster kids can't know how to raise their hands in worship or pray if they don't ever see it. Yes, she doesn't understand what raising your hands means... yet..., but I was reminded on Sunday to not give up teaching the "little things."