24 November 2013

answered prayers

Once again.  God answers prayers in a surprisingly amazing way.  And I am humbled and awed and feel so itty-bitty small.  In the best way.

Thanksgiving is this week.  I think its fair to say the holidays are upon us.  Its such a joyful & generous time.  It truly is, and I love it.

However, I've been carrying around a small concern for a week or so.  We had talked to the caseworker at the foster care office about providing Christmas stockings for the Christmas party.  We weren't really sure if it would be something we could try to organize through our church or if it was something we would just ask friends to help us with.  Of course, Brad being on lock down this week dialed up my anxiety a bit about how/when we should do this.  Oh, and we are talking about two hundred (200!!!) stockings.

Meanwhile, I hadn't been to the supply closet in about 4 weeks due to all the sickness that we had going on here.  I found a lot of empty hangers; which always gives me mixed emotions.  I'm grateful that there were suitable clothes available for the children that needed them - but I am always a little sad that a child needed them.  Does that make sense?  While I was doing the inventory on Tuesday, I noticed that there are a lot of very-summery-outfits.  (Which are nearly perfect here 8 months out of the year!)  I decided to edit the list to reflect how many outfits we currently have that would be appropriate for the current weather.  There are quite a few gaps.

Of course, I thought about all the needs and felt a little stuck about what to do.  There are so many great opportunities for giving at this time of year.  Most of them are much more convenient and better organized than our little operation.  I wasn't sure what to do or how to start.  Brad wasn't here to talk any sense into me, so I just prayed.  I asked my PWOC bible study class to pray about the stockings with me because there is a deadline looming.

And I waited. 

This morning at church, I mentioned the stockings to our Bible Study class too, asking for prayer about how/when to do this.

After class my friend, a teacher at the middle school, said, "We'll do the stockings."  And I nearly cried.  When I got to worship service I did cry.

I was sure He had a plan for these stockings.  I was desperate for Him to show me the plan ASAP.  Of course,  He revealed it in the just-so-perfect-way that leads me again to say, "Only God."

I am going to go ahead and post a list of current needs for the foster care supply closet.  With all of the crazy sales this week, I thought there might be some good opportunities to grab some deals.  As always, we need new items.  If you have any questions {a-n-y questions at all} feel free to ask them.  I know I often leave out important details! Also, you may have an idea that I hadn't considered, so please share!

Just as a word of encouragement, if you cannot purchase anything right now, please pray for the kiddos in care.  God will provide the needs.  I started tracking retail value of donations on September 28.  Since then we've collected $2799.82 worth of items.  So I do not doubt that HE WILL PROVIDE.  Your prayers are essential!

Underwear (boys & girls including bras)
Winter hats

shelf stable snacks
older kid toiletries (deodorant, body spray, etc)
activity pads
stuffed animals*
sports balls*

* these items can be new without tags, or excellent used condition ;)

And this, just because it blessed me so much.  This video from The Forgotten Initiative helps share the heart beat of what we do, and gives a glimpse into how the donations bless children, and how important your prayers are.  While we aren't quite at the same level as this group, I think the main point translates well to what we are doing here in our area.

Their Story: The Forgotten Iniatitive from Vale Church on Vimeo.

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