What just happened?

Last night at around 4:30 our Hope Rising family grew by 7. I wasn't excited. I was torn. What was wrong with me? Orphan care is not at all what one would imagine it to be and even what the books tell you it is. Trust me, I've read the books. I couldn't sleep last night and I'm sure these sweet little boys with all these emotions tied up in knots couldn't either. Seven little boys ages 1-6 sat quietly while they were bathed, clothed, fed, and put to bed by strangers. Can you imagine? Where did they come from? Why are they here? Do they have family somewhere? Will we ever find them? We were given little to no information on the 7 boys handed to us…not even names. Four different government agencies and organizations showed up with these kids which tells me they more than likely shut down an orphanage today. More than likely these kids have come from an extremely neglected and possibly abusive situation. They tell us they are going to find their families and work on reunification. I pray this is true for these kids. Yes, we have a great facility for children but being in a loving family environment if possible is still what we would prefer. I hope the government agencies don't just drop them here and forget them. We had a baby brought to us 10 weeks ago that they said would be with us only 10 days. We named her Lily and for the first 6 weeks she would never smile or cry. Everyone who met her said she was the best baby. So content. Always a serious look on her face. Never cried. Can you imagine a baby that never smiles or cries? If you meet one, be concerned. She had all the signs of a neglected baby. Babies who are well taken care of should smile, and laugh, and cry, and have needs that should be met. But at some point after lengths of time without needs being met you stop crying for those needs. After months of no interaction you don't know what smiling, and laughing, and crying are anymore. It took awhile, but Lily has come such a long way and is now smiling and laughing.  Even though she went through a lot her first 3-4 months of life she won't remember the time she never smiled.  I would choose babies. Babies are easier. But God gave us 7 little boys that will remember life before today. Seven boys that have seen, heard, and felt too much in their short lives. Seven boys that maybe have never felt love so that's what we will do. Love. I love Lily, and I will love these boys while we have them. I pray that our house moms will choose to love these children as it never comes naturally but must be a choice they make. I am asking you to pray with us for these boys.  I am asking you to share their story with others as we need financial help to care for them while they are here and potentially to help care for them if they are ever reunited with family. I am looking forward to spending more time with the boys today. Please pray for me. It's always a difficult balance with these children. When to ask questions and when to just play. Will they even play today? When to offer the gift of touch and when to back off. I took Nerlande 2 weeks before I could touch her. When to stay and when to give space. When to discipline and when to give grace. Lord, may our moms have this discernment as well. Pray for our other children who have been with us for 5 months and for their adjustment. The girls were so excited when they thought there would be more girls coming. Our boys didn't show any reactions at all. I could see disappointment in our girls eyes when they saw all boys show up. Mykerson surprised me though. He is one of our hardest boys to break but was the very first one to step up and help these kids. I am crying just thinking about how special it was because this was the first time since he has been here that I have seen him show love. There was one of the little ones starting to pee in the house and I begin to stop him and show him where the toilet is and Mykerson takes him by the hand and does it for me. Then another little boy after dinner starts to throw his trash all out on the ground and Mykerson picks up his trash and shows him where the trashcan is. I am excited to see what all God will do through all these kids and our workers, but I am so broken at the same time. I still can't comprehend everything that happened last night and I have so many thoughts and prayers going through my mind. I appreciate you all letting me vent to you this morning and I thank you in advance for your prayers. AND I hate asking for money but if you feel led to sponsor one of these precious boys email me at cara.smithson@hrch.org or you can do a generic sponsorship or one-time donation directly from our website at www.hrch.org/donate-now/