Wednesday, May 20, 2015

17 Kids and Counting

One of our biggest challenges in house parenting at Children of the Promise was that we were the first. No one had ever done this before.  There was a lot of talking and planning and preparing and ideas but no one had actually lived it.  We had to figure out shopping and who to cook when and how to cook for fourteen people  and what to eat and how to discipline and where to sleep and who to hire and what to call the aunts and how to deal with our biological kids and who gives baths and when do we worship together and so many other things.  And this was amidst learning a new culture and language.  It was overwhelming and we struggled through while feeling like we didn't have a clue.  We asked a lot of questions and kept praying.  Sometimes we cried.

Then came Seth and Melissa Johnson.  They first came and stayed at our house while we went to America for a surgery for Dan and to see family and friends.  Then they moved into the Joy House and became houseparents like us!  Their situation is a little different as they had the opportunity to watch how a house ran and decide what they liked and didn't like and could change it when they were moving into their own house.  They could ask us questions about how we handled things and then they could decide if they wanted to do it the same or differently.    But they did understand better than anyone else what it was like to live in a child home day in and day out.  That there aren't office hours or separation between work and home or any QUIET to be found ANYWHERE.  They comprehend the joys and the trials and the laughter and the tears that happen in the child homes every day.  They understand the love you have for the children, but also the longing you have for them to be placed in their adoptive families as soon as possible.

Seth and Melissa are in America right now and I miss them.  Even if we don't talk every day or just call a "hello" across the dirt road, I still know that they are there.  They understand the craziness in my house because it is happening there too…..I can hear it!   Children of the Promise is growing and changing and there are more people here and soon to be even more people living the life of a houseparent.  I am so grateful that God placed us here and that we survived the first months of muddling through the waters of questions and confusion.  I am so grateful for the people that served alongside of us along the way!

We have tried to do a few photos with the Joy House and anyone who could get 17 children dressed and clean and all willing to sit and smile at a camera is welcome to come and try.  Yes, I did say 17.  Within yards of each others houses without windows.  Silence can be found at 3 am, sometimes.

If you think this looks like a lot of children, you should see what it looks like when they are all running in different directions!!

Children of the Promise has given permission for the posting of the photos on this site.  Photos taken of  the children in the care of Children of the Promise are not to be posted publicly without explicit permission given by Children of the Promise.

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