I’d say my favorite holiday is Easter. Yes, my family was pretty heavy on the traditions for Easter, and that has made it top the charts for celebrating. But also, I love singing, saying, and proclaiming that my Redeemer lives. If I had to pick a favorite part of Jesus, it would be that He is alive. It allows for the true message of Hope and Trust. I am able to put my whole faith in One who is very much alive. I don’t search after or put my trust in a myth or a legend or a person who no longer exists. I serve a living God!
Even knowing the end of the Resurrection story, the redemption, the risen Savior, the defeating of death, it’s hard to move past the devastation of Friday. Our work in foster care has brought me to this place. The despair felt on that weekend of the very first Easter is sometimes similar to how I imagine the depth of grief in our children. Seeing something you put your hope and trust in be put to death and taken away. People didn’t know that Jesus was going to rise again, they thought He was dead. Our kids trust (or have trusted) their parents, teachers, families because that’s all they know. But then. Then there is abuse, degradation, lies, and more abuse. Then there’s no one to help, no resources, no food. Love has ceased, darkness has descended, people have come and taken them away to a stranger’s home to stay for an indefinite amount of time. It’s Friday.
The past 2 years we have felt grief, deeper than we ever have, I think. We know that we were called to this place and this work, but the extent of empathy and love required to be the hands and feet of Christ is more than I anticipated. Stories and faces make it all the more difficult to see that there is a day of redemption. It feels like we’ve been called to hang out with people on Friday, and move with them into the uncertainty yet forward progress of Saturday. Because I know Jesus and His story, I know there is a day when He rises again. I hope that within 6 months to a year a child’s family will be able to take them back or a new family will take them in as their own. But we know it’s coming, we just don’t know when, and we proclaim it. We attempt to be their cheerleader in the darkness of their current reality.
We are His disciples, who have heard Him say that He will be back when no one else is sure what will happen. I feel like most of my posts are about acknowledging the grief, the sadness, the reality of people’s lives. But that’s where foster care happens. Grieving with friends, family, and our children sure does feel like that Friday night. Listening to difficult questions about the future feels a lot like that Saturday. Some days it is tough to remember that on Sunday Jesus wins. I know He does. It’s my favorite part. I just get jealous that on that first Easter, the people only had to wait for 3 days. It is a bit harder to accept when a child, a grieving family, or a sick friend must wait a year or 10 or not until Heaven to feel the ‘win’. But I have something that those people never had, the knowledge that He will indeed come. Until then, you’ll find us hanging out on a Friday.