As a result of abuse, neglect and/or abandonment, there are over 430,000 children in the U.S. foster care system. 120,000 of them are legally-free for adoption and are waiting for a forever family. 310,000 have the goal to reunited with their birth family and need a loving foster family while they wait. Every year, 26,000 age out of the system at 18 (or 21 in some states) without a family.
The church is frequently referred to as a family. When I was baptized, a woman I barely knew came to me after the service, huge smile on her face, and said, “Welcome to the family!” This is the beauty of the church, that we are a family, united by God.
We, the church, children of God, are called to love and to care about the things God cares about. As Ephesians 5:1-2 states, “Therefore, be imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.”
The book of James summarizes what true religion is, when James writes to the church in Jerusalem, “Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.” To be part of the family of God means caring for the needs of others. Will we take action in this?
Not everyone is called to be a foster home for kids and teens in need of a home, but everyone is called to care. This weekend at Central, we’ll have a chance to hear from The Pearl Project, a local ministry dedicated to supporting families who foster. We will also be holding a fundraiser taco luncheon on March 8th to raise money and collect diapers for this ministry. Please join us as we prepare to be the family of God by caring for children who have been removed from their homes, children from hard places, and people who have been created in the image of God. Each of us is a masterpiece of God, created to do good works, let’s do a good work by helping to provide caring and loving homes to kids and teens who have none.
Visit The Pearl Project’s website here, thepearlprojectflorida.org.
For more info on foster care from CIY, visit hardtoplacefilm.com.
Further Up and Further In,
Pastor Josh Reed