Tiny Prayers
      Fear took its place on the face of a four year old boy as the social worker escorted him into our home - a temporary place for him, one in which he was safe and could rest for a while. With unanswered questions of his past, I held him close - his tiny body, badly bruised and his self confidence shattered.  I loved him from that second, wanted to nurture him and give him all I had to make him feel my love. He was scared, unsure of who we were - to him, we must have been strangers there to take his parents place. Yet, it wasn't his call - he had no choice, they took him where they wanted him to go- his mind began to wonder if it was his fault...
    I've been a foster parent for many years, but the look on this little boy's face the night they brought him to me was one of absolute despair, one of an endless need for hope - for love - for someone to hold him. Yet, in those same eyes, I saw a scared little boy - one afraid to open  up and tell the horrible secrets of his life. I wanted to be the one, the one that he trusted, the one that he would cling to, the one that he'd open up to. 
    At four years old - never potty trained - and terrified to be left alone, his deep dependence on others became inevitable. We couldn't go from one room to the next without him screaming for us not to leave him, we couldn't get out of our vehicle in our driveway without him begging for us to hurry and open the door. The endless nights of screaming during his sleep was a reflection of what he must have had to endure at home. My heart cried out to God to help us show this precious little boy that we were there for him, would never harm him, and that we'd never leave him.
    God answered my prayers - maybe not in my time, but in His. This little boy's world soon began to strengthen, his dependence became a thing of the past, and his strong desire to be a boy was revealing itself.  How great is God's mercy...
    After about 3 months of living with us, this little boy's life had taken a 180 degree turn from that horrible night, and God receives the glory for it.  Many times I've thanked Him for bringing this child into my life. And at night when we'd kneel and pray, we'd thank God together for our paths crossing. This child would pray for his mom and dad every night before climbing into bed. Funny how 3 months ago he didn't even know who God was, yet today he knows that God not only loves him, but that He'll always be there with him, and more than anything, that God listens to his tiny prayers.
    Adoption was certainly an option for my husband and I as we both loved this child so much, but it didn't happen.  After putting the supper dishes away one night, we were headed to bed, to say our "night time prayer" when the phone rang. I felt a cold chill - one that is unexplainable.  When I looked at the caller i.d., I saw the one name I didn't want to see - the social worker.  My worse nightmare had began.
    "It's time" she said as she explained that this little boy's parents had been approved to take him home, and she'd be there in the morning to pick him up. My world started spinning. My husband's arms wrapped tightly around me as he knew it was all I could do to even stand up.  When I hung up the phone, this little boy ran to me and wrapped his tiny arms around my leg, he knew something wasn't right, "what is it?" his big beautiful blue eyes looked up at me with curiosity.
    After explaining to him that he would be going home tomorrow, the innocent sound of his voice seemed to tear a whole in my heart as he said, "its ok - you don't have to cry, I'll be back to visit." Needless to say, he didn't realize we'd never see him again, and I didn't have the heart to tell him that.
    As the social worker stood in our home with the child's packed bags, I was reminded of the night he walked through our door.  He now stands in the same spot, yet a different child. Once a child who knew nothing about God, now a child that prays to Him nightly.  Once a child so dependent on others, now a child who stands bold.  Before leaving, we knelt down with him and said our last tiny prayer together, with his little hands in ours we thanked God for His love and asked for His continuous hand to be upon us all.
    As our hands slipped apart, I wanted to grab him, hug him, tell him I didn't want him to go, and beg the social worker to please let him stay. But, for this little boy I had to be strong, I had to be responsible, I had to...learn to let go.
    As quick as he came into our lives, one year later - he was gone. But, on bent knee, God gives me the strength to take it all one day at a time. It hurts today, but the comfort that God has sent is unexplainable.  I know this little boy is somewhere - tonight - saying a tiny prayer, as I ask God for his protective hand to be upon him. God has reminded me that He is still in control, and through the tiny prayers of this little boy - who knows, maybe mom and dad will realize it too.
    I give God the praise and glory through Jesus Christ for allowing me to journey through this life and being able to spend a part of it with the one child that I'll never forget, and the most important part of this journey is the honor of teaching this little boy that God always hears tiny prayers.

BlueIris   BlueIris wrote
on 10/3/2008 1:10:52 AM
I cried a little when I read this. Thank you for sharing, and thank you for being a caring foster parent, helping children in need. I love what you said about "tiny prayers."

OneVoice   OneVoice wrote
on 10/2/2008 11:24:50 PM
Each day our lives are filled with opportunities that afford us a chance to elevate ourselves. Thank you for giving this child love - he was my brother... for turning his fear into faith - he was my son... for giving him hope where he had none - he was my dad. God willing, he will grow to become a son, a brother, a husband, a father. One day he may be the hand of God that will change the world. Do you understand what Mary went through watching her son die? All things happen by design. This baby came to give you love and fill your emptiness... the emptiness you felt fill him. Many blessings...

writing Deb
Writing is a passion - without passion, its just words.
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This is a true story and is written from the heart - with tears, I retrace the memories of this child's impact on my life and how important it was to him to say his tiny prayers before bedtime. And its also a reminder that God works in ways that is beyond our comprehension, that we may not understand today - but in time, all will be revealed.
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