On Wednesdays we are thrilled to fling open the doors to all of YOU! We love hearing your dreaming stories…the lessons you’ve learned, the roads you’ve walked, the dreams He’s planted in your hearts! Today we are excited to welcome Carrie Dahlin to God-sized Dreams. She shares the story of how God walked her through some unexpected places and she found blessings because of it. Thanks for being here today, Carrie!
My husband and I were young and eager to live an adventure for God. Standing in our kitchen, one day, we prayed for God to enlarge our territories, through the well-known prayer of Jabez. My husband and I had our own ideas of what that might look like, and we even went as far as to hope God would simply follow along with our dreams.
We imagined adopting from Africa, being missionaries, and teaching overseas. However, seven years into our marriage and two children later, we realized that God was asking us to become foster parents in our hometown.
We dived right into our training and jumped into an adventure that would change my life forever. We spent the next several years parenting children who had been through trauma, helping children who had special-needs and overall became a safe family for those who needed one.
While living live my dream of caring for children who needed a mother I was often faced with worry, doubt, and confronting my fear of failure. Living a life where I had little control over what happened to the children in my home often brought me to my knees in prayer. Becoming a foster parent with my husband and two children would become the season in my life where I found that I needed God more than I ever realized. Not only would He shape my family through adoption, He would bring me to a place where I woke up from my sleepy state as a believer.
Being a foster parent was heart wrenching. Every time we faced a roadblock with DHS or watched birth families fail or spent our days caring for a child who was hurt and angry; the temptation was there to simply walk away. However, because I lived through those difficult times I learned how to seek God for comfort when the world couldn’t provide any.
At the same time God was working in the lives of the children in our home He became less like a lifeline that I sought in case of an emergency and more a father who walked beside me as I sought his counsel.
As layers were removed from my life, I started to crave God’s will instead of my own. (<====Tweet this.) I was eager to walk away from the cookie-cutter mentality that I once longed for and became desperate for His love not only for myself, but for the children I was mothering.
I thought my adventure would end there with lessons learned and living life as a foster/ adoptive mother. Yet, God had even bigger dreams in mind. Dreams I would have never come up with on my own. God put a desire on my heart to help others seek His will in their own journey as I share my roller coaster story through my foster parenting memoir, What Led Me to You: how a mother’s faith and family grew in ways she never expected.
Not only did God want me to be a foster parent but He also wanted me to be a voice for foster parents. I believe that when God walks you through the unexpected and you come out the other side a different person, there is a story to be told.
Because I found God in the place where I had no control, I was able to seek Him in every step of the way and found myself living an adventure I never imagined, one that would inspire others to seek God’s will in their own lives.
Living out God-sized dreams includes living in hard places. (<====Tweet this.) It means being stretched and shaped along the way so you can give glory to God for all you had been through. And sometimes it means, as it did for me, sharing your story so others feel less alone.
Photo Credit: Marilyn Peddle
Carrie Dahlin is the author of What Led Me to You. She lives near Portland, Oregon with her husband and seven children. Carrie is passionate about connecting with other foster parents and helping them get the support they need as they spend many of their days living in the trenches. You can connect with Carrie at www.CarrieDahlin.com, where she often shares her heart and more of their story.
Carrie’s book, What led Me to You, is available on amazon.com.
Do you have a God-sized Dream story to tell? We’d love to have you share your journey with us!
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