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“Then Jesus said, ‘Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.’” Matthew 11:28

This year has brought on so many different challenges that have made many of us weary. At first, we spoke positively, rallied together, even sang in parking lots and tried to find the silver lining in what we assumed would be three months at the most, but now all the pivoting and continued flexibility is becoming exhausting. Foster parents are used to being flexible and rolling with change. Adoptive parents are practiced in focusing on the inspiring parts of hard stories. Kinship families know what it means to navigate challenges because they carry the burden of loving their family while still establishing clear boundaries. We care for kids from hard places in our homes so we know what it means to do hard things and keep a hopeful outlook, but this season has been long.

We are more hands-on then we were before. Our normal supports like school, sports and sunday school are still not meeting. Even though the world feels the same as it did at the end of the school year the expectation of what we should be able to accomplish moving forward with remote learning has increased. Our workload has increased from being parents, providers, therapy-appointment-schedulers and foster-care-record-keepers to being tech-savvy, multi-grade level teachers, three-meals-a-day-cooks, children’s fitness instructors and sunday school teachers. Plus, we must make sure all our kids keep their masks on. This is a heavy burden to continue to carry. Just the thought of it can make you weary.

Jesus is offering rest in every season. I don’t fully know what this “rest” looks like when the workload has increased and the challenge of juggling more is becoming normal, but I want it.

“Come to me all who are weary and carry heavy burdens.” He will give us rest and the “peace that surpasses all understanding.” (Phil 4:7)

Even if we don’t know how long this season will last or when kids will go back to school or when vaccines will be available or when our job situations will change we can have peace today. When we seek Him in prayer, read our bible with the intention that it is for us and consume media that increases our hope instead of magnifying our fear we will begin to breathe easier. We will begin to rest.

- Ashley Wambach, President/Executive Director Compelled to Care

Originally posted Sept. 15, 2020

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