Where do the kids who no one wants go? How do foster kids who are “difficult to place” because of their medical challenges find a home?
Sometimes, the story of a family captures your imagination and your heart.
A fellow writer and speaker, Shellie Nichol, recently wrote a story about a child she’s welcoming to her home (the story is below). It touched my heart and soul. The Bible is very clear: God’s people are to take care of widows, orphans, the poor, the hurting. Shellie’s life is very clear: she’s heard and obeying God’s call. When I read her story, I knew I had to get involved.
Shellie and her husband Sundeep have six biological children of their own, but they have taken in up to three foster children at a time over the last 15 years. Not just any kids. Shellie takes the kids no one wants: medically fragile, developmentally or physically disabled, it doesn’t matter. She feels called by God to welcome these kids, and love on them, whether it is for a few months or a couple of years. She never sends them away, but sometimes they leave to be adopted elsewhere, or to return home to a less than ideal situation. “We’ve said goodbye 40 times,” she says wistfully.
But no matter. She’s always willing to say hello again, to another child. A child who needs a home. She is one of only five homes in her county who welcome in “medically fragile” children.
And right now, Shellie and her family have a need: reliable transportation for their very large family. To take the whole tribe somewhere, they have to take two vehicles. So at the suggestion of a friend, they’re started a gofundme page to raise money to buy a reliable used 12 or 15 passenger van.
Read Shellie’s story below, about meeting the child that will probably be their next foster placement. And please go read their story on the fund page. I hope you’ll make this amazing family part of your holiday giving.
You Want ME? by Shellie Nichol
“You want me?” No child should ever utter these words, yet today they were spoken to me….
Last week we received a call to take in a little girl that desperately needed to leave the hospital, that desperately needed a family and that up to now, no one would take her in….but we are.
Last week Sundeep Chandar and I headed to the hospital to meet a little girl that would surely be our most challenging, difficult yet we know most rewarding placement yet. Although I can not reveal details, I will say that she survived something most could not. She has endured pain that I assure you, you could never imagine. The day we went to meet her, to see if we could say yes…we saw a little girl full of anger, that wouldn’t hold her head up…that thinks she is ugly. As we left the hospital and entered the stairwell I was fully expecting Sundeep to say “baby we can’t do this, this is too much” but he didn’t, he shocked me…he said instead “babe I can’t help but think that little girl needs us”….and so our new journey begins.
But today…today I was not prepared for the words this little girl would speak to me. As we sat in the hospital room getting to know each other, and showing her pictures of her soon to be home and family she began to call me Mom. The nurse couldn’t believe it…I did NOT ask her to do that…she asked me if Sundeep would be her daddy?? I told her yes we would be her Mommy and Daddy…and take good care of her. She then half looked up and half held her head down and uttered these words “you want me? nobody wants me”….I am telling you it took every ounce of self control to not cry. I put her little face in my hands told her to look in my eyes, and I said this “yes baby girl I want you, I want you so bad that I picked you special, I prayed special for you…and God brought you to us” she then asked me “who is God??”…..I told her with excitement “God is a super cool totally awesome dude that loves you beyond any kind of love you can imagine…I will tell you all about him later”
As out time began to come to an end, I told her I had to go but I would be back to see her tomorrow to learn how to take care of her. She said she never had a home…and asked if it was really really a real home?? Again I try not to cry “yes sweet girl it is a really real home, I will see my sweet girl tomorrow and we will get you outta here soon”
As I write this my eyes are flooded with tears, tears of joy that God would allow us to scoop up this angel and love her, tears for what this little girl has endured, and tears of what is to come…whatever that may be….oh and there is a brother…or as she calls him her “bruver” and according to her nurses he is to die for….so we pray.
This is foster care my friends, this is a glimpse into a real life, a real child that only asks the question “do you want me??” so I ask you….”Do you??”
Please go learn more about this amazing family and their need for a Foster Care Hope Van.