They called me “Ms. Heidi” as they always do. I have gone by that name for over 60 kids in foster care. Yet, in the middle of another chaotic day, when my children purposefully didn’t call me “Mom,” it felt like a stab in my heart. I am following a call directly from the Lord to mother children who need it. Not being called “Mom” comes with the territory. Most of my kids have living parents, they just need a safe home for the time being. It seems to be no big deal when kids don’t use the title of “mom” for me.
Yet, when I lose track of who I am in Christ, it is easy to become bitter. I allow myself to listen to the lies from the enemy that I am no longer worth it when my kids fail to recognize me with a title I think I deserve. I tell myself that I put the work into raising them. I love them without conditions. I teach instead of punishing. I am the one up all night with their fears. I am the one that feeds and rocks and sings and cleans for them. But she still gets to be called “mom.” Fostering and adopting does not feel victorious on days like this. It feels lonely as if I am fighting a battle with no end. It feels like I am giving up my life to fix someone else’s mistake.
God so gently reminds me through kind words from a friend or through the encouragement of my husband that it is not about me. This is not my fight. It does not matter what they call me. HIS name is victory. I am not doing all this just to earn a name for myself. No label or certificate will give me worth because God has redeemed me. God has called me by name and tells me that I am His. And He does this for you too. I continue to press on proudly as “Ms. Heidi” because the Almighty God has given me a name. Call to mind God’s redemption of your story today, whether anyone else can see it or not. God does not call us to a life full of victory, but of faithfulness to Him.
This is what the Lord says, “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you. I have called you by name. You are mine” (Isaiah 43:1 NASB).
Featured Image by Marcelo Silva