Monday is the only day that we go to co-op. When I'm finished with my three hour commitment, I take Codie and the baby and we go home. This gives me roughly two hours to grade papers, send out my weekly email update, clean the house, and do whatever needs to be done before the girls come home.
This Monday did not start out like any other Monday. Something seemed to be a little bit different, class did not go as usual, however, it went really well. Instead of history we had a 20 minute Bible lesson. I simply spoke about Colossians 3:23. Explain to the class about how important it is to do everything to the glory of God. This means cleaning our room, turning in all work, doing our homework, or simply walking down the hallway quietly.
We then had two presentations to go to as well today. Due to these presentations we missed our vocabulary test. None of the students were too disappointed about this. After co-op I got the boys, we went home and I sent out my weekly email updates. Since we didn't have any time in class I started grading papers. It doesn't take too long to grade each writing paper. I am looking for very specific elements, banned words, and a little content.
I was on the fourth paper when my phone rang. I knew it was Mrs. caseworker from caller ID.
"Good afternoon Mrs. Kerr, how are you?" She asks.
I responded with "It depends on why you're calling...."
She laughs. She knows what I mean. She then proceeds to tell me about an emergency placement that is needing to happen right now. A little shocked and very saddened to hear what is going on, a, I agree to take two children. An 8 year old girl, & a five year old boy. Then I call hubby and let him know what's going on.
Hubby, Codie and I all start crisis mode. Moses is sleeping through all of this. Not a bad crisis, just a hurry up and let's get this done quickly mode. Codie and I find the spare car seats, vacuum the floor, make sure all beds are made, and the kitchen is relatively clean. Hubby starts cleaning up at work and is talking to his boss about leaving work early. He also wants me to text him a shopping list so we have more food in the house.
We stay at home for lunch every day. That means I can serve leftovers for lunch. However, in public school you can't take leftovers and expect a hot lunch at mealtime. I don't keep a lot of lunch meat 1) because it's not healthy 2) its expensive and 3) we don't eat it much. However when you're at public school all day, or gone all day, you need something to eat. This is quick and easy and relatively nutritious.
In that same conversation (about food and where the car seats are in the attic) we also discussed taking on two younger siblings. It would be difficult, however, I would rather keep siblings together than have them panic and worry about what is going on with their older / younger siblings and not know where they are. I believe that it would give them more comfort, stability, and be a lot less dramatic if they could all stay together. This would put us over our legal limit of children in the home. After hanging up with hubby, and still rushing around the house, I called the caseworker and asked if this would be possible. She was shocked. I don't recall ever hearing someone just so shocked to have children be accepted. She decided it would be best for us to take the two for now, see what would happen, see how long the children would be with us, then take the other 2 shortly. I saw her point and accepted her wisdom.
Back to cleaning. It's amazing what can be done when properly motivated. 3 o'clock came and it was time to get the girls. That two hour time window went very quickly! Just as we're about to walk out the door to get the girls and quickly drive 30 miles south to pick up these new frightened children, the caseworker calls back and says stop.
They had found somebody who was readily available, and legally capable of taking all four children. Along with my energy rush being quickly halted, I felt both a sense of relief and disappointment. I was rather looking forward to meeting these children, being of light in their lives, and trying to help them as much as I possibly could. At the same time I was slightly relieved because having new new children in the house means everybody is adjusting to this new situation. There are a lot of changes that take place, and it's very difficult to explain, but there is a little bit of underlying tension while everyone is getting everyone else. You also have to realize that these children are terrified, uncomfortable, and probably don't want to be where they are. I understand that. I can't even imagine how they feel. However, I do enjoy being the friendly face, loving arms, and willing servant of God that will accept them for who they are, as they are, and bring them in for as long as needed.
It was still time to pick up the girls, so we left and got them from coop. On the way home I was explaining to them how the afternoon went. As I was going over it in my mind, I realized that I felt like I have been tested by God. The thought never crossed my mind at the time, I didn't have time to think. I have learned to pray daily for God's guidance in decisions like this. Because when the time comes, you almost have a split second decision to make. You don't always have time to take 5 minutes and pray. Sometimes I do, but not always. This time I felt like God was testing me, to take on a challenge that I'm uncomfortable with, to serve him in a way that I have openly stated I am uncomfortable with and to fully trust him in every situation.
Through this I have learned:
It is not what I am willing to do, or even what I am capable of doing, it's all a matter of what God is capable of doing through me. All I have to do is trust that He will equip me for every good work. 2 tim 3:16-17.