Sunday, July 3, 2011

News From The Barkley Household

There is some news from the Barkley household. Last year, through a variety of circumstances God laid adoption upon my heart. There was even a specific special needs child on the other side of the world that captured my heart. I began to pray about it and pray over this specific child. After some time we decided to inquire and found out that we didn’t meet all of the criteria necessary for that specific country. I will be honest, it broke my heart. I still have this child as a screen saver on my computer and bless him every morning and pray him to sleep every evening (ok with the time difference it wouldn’t really be those times for him). In the process of inquiring about this child, we talked with a wonderful social worker who explained all types of adoption and foster care. She shared about how desperately they need foster homes; places and families for a variety of children that have been removed from their own homes while their parent(s) work on becoming healthier and whole. We spent a lot of time in prayer and discernment. We had many fears and hesitations about foster care (could we really do that; how would it affect our children that we have now; isn’t this really too messy to get into; we are busy people, can we give the time and energy to this ministry; how on earth could we “return” a child that we become bonded with, etc.). We talked to a few people who were either professionals in that field and/or foster parents themselves at one time or another but other than that we just listened for the voice of God. Little by little God softened the fears and anxieties in our hearts and we began to move forward in the paperwork process for foster care. THEN came the news that Pastor Dick was leaving and we decided to keep going. THEN came the news eventually that Pastors Cindy and David were leaving. We wondered if maybe that was a sign to stop. We prayerfully decided to keep going with the required paperwork and classes knowing that we would be licensed for 4 years and could always choose not to take a child (that is always a choice throughout the process). We finished our classes just before the real intense time of awaiting the new pastors. We received news that our licensed was approved and in a few weeks we could possibly start receiving phone calls about potential placements. Fast forward to this past Friday night and without knowing our license was officially processed and we were “on the list” we received 2 phone calls. The first phone call ended up being resolved without a need to place the children but the second phone call was for a 3 month old boy “Z.” My heart was moved hearing his story and we decided to accept him into our home. The social workers anticipate this will be a short term placement while some other family members are identified to care for him. We seek your prayers during this time, both for us, that we would provide medically sound care for him (as he has some medical issues) in addition to being a loving home and for baby “Z” to get healthier and feel safe in this time of transition and for his family that has wounds of their own that are in need of healing.  
I know many of you may not understand why our family is doing this. You may be looking out for our best interests and want to protect us from the strain and the messiness of foster care. We do not expect this to be easy and quite frankly, we know that there will most definitely be agonizing moments. What I can tell you is that through this experience God has affirmed that this is a ministry that our family has been called into (and yes I believe this is a ministry).  When God calls us, God equips us for the call. There is a whole lot of stepping out in faith and trusting and obeying but to share the love of God with another is the call of every Christian. The sermon this morning by our new Pastor Jane (which was awesome by the way) was about love and about how when we love God, we are drawn into loving others more closely.  I was overcome with emotion as my husband brought baby “Z” up in his arms for communion and I blessed this child, knowing that God loves this little one even more than we do and it is our job to live out of that love every day he is in our care and then, as much as it may hurt, let go and trust that God will be watching over him.1 John 4:11-12 "My dear, dear friends, if God loved us like this, we certainly ought to love each other. No one has seen God, ever. But if we love one another, God dwells deeply within us, and his love becomes complete in us—perfect love!"
My cup is overflowing with this perfect love of God and I look forward to sharing this journey with you about loving the "others" God has put in our lives.


  1. I'm very excited for your family! God is amazing!

  2. Thank you for letting me love up baby "Z" this morning. My heart was blessed knowing he is in such good care and surrounded by so much love. My soul was moved this morning by the ministry your family is taking on. My girls were so excited to tell my Mom about this baby that needs someone to love it right now and how your family is the one to do it at this time. :-)

  3. congratulations. where is baby "z" from? I have friends up north that are in the process of adoption. They have 4 kids already of their own and God has laid it on their hearts to adopt from Ethiopia. I will be praying for you.