The Lies We Believe about TV Dinners and Foster Care

One night when my parents were gone, my older brother was watching me. I was just about to eat a TV dinner that included spaghetti when I learned some life-altering information.

My brother casually mentioned that the TV dinner people made the spaghetti from worms. As you might imagine this intel came as quite a shock. You might accuse me of being particularly gullible but let’s be honest — once a person knows what hot dogs are really made of, is the idea of spaghetti being made out of worms really so far-fetched?

Not only did I NOT eat the spaghetti that night (and it didn’t dawn on me until this very moment that my brother very well might have commandeered it for himself), but I didn’t eat TV dinner spaghetti or canned spaghetti for a very long time after that. I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.

I had made a choice to refrain from something and that decision was based on false information.

People do this everyday and it certainly happens in the foster care world. Certain ideas are passed around and as a result people make decisions to not do something based on that false information.

Here are a few things that people say and believe about kids and families in foster care that influence their actions, or more specifically lead them to inaction:

If a person believes . . .

that most teenagers are unadoptable,

Then that person . . .

will never advocate and fight relentlessly to find permanent homes for teens

 

If a person believes . . .

that parents who have abused or neglected their kids are monsters that should never be allowed to get their kids back,

Then that person . . .

will never take pro-active steps toward offering biological families the grace, redemption and opportunity for reconciliation we’ve all been offered as followers of Jesus.

 

If a person believes . . .

that the system is irreparably broken,

Then that person . . .

will never roll up their sleeves, grab a towel, and ask what they can do to help fix it.

 

If a person believes . . .

that there will always be a shortage of foster and adoptive homes,

Then that person . . .

will never rally other folks in their community and set out to provide more than enough in their own county (which, by the way, is not only possible, it has been done).

Believing things that simply aren’t true gives us a false sense of justification for inaction. It’s called hopelessness. Hopelessness is based on the lie that things are so bad, so broken, so flawed, that they could never be truly better.

And as followers of Jesus, hopelessness has no place here.

This post originally appeared in our Foster Roster e-newsletter which is delivered each Friday. We keep it short and sweet and fill it with practical articles, videos, blog posts and other tools for leaders like you working to help kids and families in foster care.  To sign up, go to http://bit.ly/1rwn6eO.