We are celebrating “Sam-iversary,” as mentioned in the Day 3 entry.
Our two youngest children, Sam and Mercy, came to us first as foster children. Less than a year after a social worker had brought Mercy into our lives, we learned that her birth parents were expecting another child. Cocaine use by the mother during this new pregnancy had been confirmed, just as meth abuse had been a factor while she was carrying Mercy. We were asked if we would take the placement and we readily agreed; the idea of keeping a group of siblings together had been one of our reasons for becoming foster parents.
The Department of Child and Family Services had directed the hospital to alert them when this second child was born so that he could be taken into care. In a tragic error, though, they failed to do so and sent the little baby boy home with his birth parents. This touched off heartbreak and panic: We couldn’t help but imagine the pain this was going to cause his biological mother and father, and we began praying for them. And there was also a very real fear that they might try to abscond with the child.
As if that weren’t enough, we were also told that a major clerical overhaul of our foster parent license would have to be undertaken because of our family size. Our three oldest daughters had all moved out by then but, counting Mercy, we had six kids living in the home; in order for us to take in this precious newborn child, we would need an expanded license.
I know this will shock you, but government agencies in these parts aren’t exactly hailed as paragons of efficiency. By God’s grace alone, the expansion of our foster parent license – a process that often takes weeks – was pulled off in one day. This was unheard of and we thank the Lord for that administrative miracle. It meant that little baby Sam wouldn’t have to spend time in a transitional home, but could come directly to our home.
Missy and I, and our entire church family, were bathing the matter in constant prayer. That’s how Sam got his name, in fact: 1 Samuel 1:20 – “Wherefore it came to pass, when the time was come about after Hannah had conceived, that she bare a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, Because I have asked him of the LORD.”
Sam, all of three days old, arrived at our home on September 6, 2006. Glory to God, we were privileged to adopt both Mercy and Sam in February of 2009.
Be sure to check out this video of Sam (whom we call Bub) with Mercy (affectionately known as “PeeWee”) with our grandson Asher (who desperately needs a cool nickname):