Lilyfield Christian Adoption and Foster Care

Lilyfield

Visit us online to read blogs on a variety of issues that are related to adoption, foster care and parenting. Serving the communities of Oklahoma City, Tulsa and all other areas in the state of Oklahoma.

Hope for the Future

Friday, July 18, 2014


Earlier this year Lilyfield welcomed the first resident to the Gateway Independent Living Program. The program gives female youth who have aged out of foster care a place where they can pursue a higher education.

We launched our program a few months ago but we are seeing success already. The program allows female youth who have had no support and no hope for the future gain some footing and a chance to change the course of their lives. The goal of the Gateway Program is to empower young women who have aged out of the foster care system to complete their higher education and begin a path of self-sufficiency. One resident shares her experience with the Gateway Program.

My name is Mae. Lilyfield has helped me with so much, along with great attitudes and patience. They helped me pack all my things to move here close to them in Edmond. They helped me apply for healthcare, paid for my food, and let me decorate my room. They only want what’s best for me. They have given me great advice and most importantly are getting me in school. They are helping me find any way they can to pay for my school, so I can go to UCO. It’s the most important thing to me in life, and they are on the same page as me with helping me and treating me no different than any other person. I really appreciate them a whole lot.

Sincerely,
Mae, Gateway Resident



Mae has excelled in the Gateway Independent Living Program and has made it her home. She has her own room where she can study and work on her classes. Mae is a true testament to how the program can provide stability and hope for a brighter future.

Judah's Family

Wednesday, July 09, 2014


Steve, Jama and big brothers Abraham and William added baby Judah to their family in 2013.

Steve says, “Adding to our family through adoption has brought Jama, our children, and I tremendous joy. With each new stage of Judah’s life we are reminded of God’s provision and the abundance of his blessings.”

Turning Point: Alicia's Story

Wednesday, July 02, 2014
I want to share with you how Lilyfield helped me make the most important decision of my life.

When I found out I was pregnant with my first child, I had been married for nearly four years, but the marriage was abusive. Even though my husband knew of my pregnancy, the abuse continued and my baby and I were continually put into dangerous situations. That was something I simply could not accept. With the help of a friend I moved from my hometown for the first time ever, and made my way to Oklahoma.

Although I was excited about the upcoming birth of my daughter, I knew that I was not in an ideal situation to parent, as I was still healing from my abusive marriage and had a long road ahead of me in rebuilding my life in Oklahoma. After weighing my options with a small support circle and some research on the Internet, I decided to contact local adoption agencies. I initially met with three different agencies, but Lilyfield seemed to have the widest array of information and helped me feel most at ease. My caseworker happily answered any questions I had about the process and met me at my home each week to discuss what I was feeling and what to expect.

Within the first two or three weeks of becoming a Lilyfield client, I started looking through portfolios of prospective adoptive parents. I had a great feeling about one particular couple, and I met with them the following week. After that meeting, I was more certain than ever that they were extremely deserving and loving parents for my daughter – it was a perfect match!

I stayed in close contact with the couple for the next few weeks leading up to the birth, and they became (and continue to be) another source of comfort and support for me. I gave birth to a healthy, beautiful and amazing baby girl, and they were at the hospital with me every step of the way. When I first saw my daughter, I immediately fell in love, and although the first few days were admittedly hard, I knew I had made the right decision. My Lilyfield caseworker visited me for a few weeks after and made herself available to talk and to answer any other questions I have.

My daughter's adoption is very open, and I keep in regular contact with her parents. They typically send pictures and updates weekly, and it is just as important to them for me to be in my daughter's life as it is to me. It is incredibly rewarding knowing that my daughter is happy and loved, with all the potential in the world.

I am so thankful that Lilyfield was there to help me when I was lost, and because of them, the outcome for myself, my little girl and her new family is overwhelmingly positive.


Worth the Cost

Friday, June 27, 2014


It is not uncommon to hear people talk about the challenges associated with adoption. It is costly, both in time and money. The “wait” to be matched with a child is difficult. There are often many unknown factors about the child and their past. For birth parents, allowing another family to raise their child is the most difficult decision they may face in life.

But there is an amazing thing that happens in adoption, when you see a child thrive and grow in a family that was handpicked for them by God. Glory is one of those children. She was blessed with the gift of forever parents, Ray and Alicia last year.

“Glory is a precious gift from my Heavenly Father! Having Glory as our daughter makes God’s love for us much clearer as He has adopted us into His family through faith in Christ Jesus,” says Ray.

Volunteer with us

Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Our programs continue to grow, giving us rich opportunities to serve many children and families. We would love to have your partnership as a volunteer for some very important upcoming events. To help prepare our volunteers, we have scheduled a Volunteer Orientation on Tuesday, June 24th at 7 p.m. at our Lilyfield offices.

Some of our volunteer positions will be directly interacting with the children we serve, and these positions require background checks and some training.

We are currently accepting volunteer applications for individuals interested in volunteering at our monthly Care Connect support groups to work in our children's groups. We are also accepting applications for our Care Connect Kid's Camp in July.

We hope you will consider joining us to learn more about these opportunities. For more information about volunteering with Lilyfield or to RSVP to for the June 24th orientation, email Sara Judd at sjudd@lilyfield.org.

Together we can change the life of a child!

Adoption: Planned by God

Wednesday, June 11, 2014
Psalm 68:6 says that God places the lonely in families. The work of adoption is an amazing ministry of the Lord and at Lilyfield we truly believe we see God at work each time a child is adopted by his or her forever family. 

Jeremy, Melodie and big brothers Holden and Paxton were blessed with the addition of baby Abe into their family last year. Jeremy and Melodie always planned to adopt children at some point in their lives, so deciding to adopt their first child five years ago was just a natural step for them.

Jeremy and Melodie are now the proud parents of three boys they were blessed with through adoption.

“We want them to have complete confidence in the way God has written each of their stories,” Melodie said. “Above anything else, I want my boys to understand they were planned and created by God. They are here, with us, on purpose, by God.” 


Under Construction: Our Foster Care Road

Friday, May 23, 2014
May is National Foster Care Month. Our blog will feature different foster perspectives throughout the month. Today’s post is written by Lilyfield foster mother Kathy.

The verse that has defined our foster care experience so far is, “And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God,” Micah 6:8.
 
“Act justly” I would say acting justly is living with a sense of right and wrong, and protecting the innocent. Fostering has challenged my sense of right and wrong. I’ve realized that our way of parenting is not the only way. We are doing the best we know how based on our life experience, our family upbringing, education, etc. So was our little guy’s biological family. Yes, choices were made that caused him to be removed, and sometimes families make choices that are so horrendous the child will never be returned to their biological family. But OKDHS encourages “bridging” between the foster and bio families. This is something that has been important to my husband and me, especially since we are dealing with a case that seems to be headed towards reunification. It hasn’t always been easy and sometimes I feel like our bridge is always under major construction. But we are 2 totally different families with 2 different walks of life united by our love for one adorable little boy. Bridging will always be a goal we work towards.

“Love mercy” I’m so thankful God is merciful. Foster care allows us to love with mercy on a daily basis…to love as He loves us. We love this little guy with all our hearts. We love him with a fierce love, knowing he may not always be with us. 

“Walk humbly with your God” Foster care keeps you humble because you know your life is about to be changed, but you don’t exactly know how. For us, it meant going from our family of 4 (have to mention our other 2 loves that were adopted from China and Rwanda) to a family of 5. This was a huge step because as parents, we were suddenly outnumbered. We realize that at any given moment a coup could be forming against us. But the love we get to share with these kids makes it all worth it. Some of our humbling moments have included a weekend where we were so overwhelmed and exhausted that we didn’t attend our church small group on a Sunday evening. Then our group showed up with encouraging words and a bunch of food. It is humbling to see our 2 kiddos that have become very close over the past couple years, allow another “sibling” to come in and love him unconditionally. They protect him, pray for him and have genuine concern for his parents that often humbles me when I realize my attitude isn’t in the right place. It is humbling when I realize we have been trusted and allowed to take care of a child that isn’t even ours. Walking humbly with God means we have to continually rely on Him.
 
We are so thankful for the way fostering has changed our lives. It has strengthened our family and our walk with God.

The Joy of Foster Care

Friday, May 16, 2014
May is National Foster Care Month. Our blog will feature different foster perspectives throughout the month. Today’s post is written by Lilyfield foster family Brian and Haley Padgham.

Our story begins with a love for children that knows no boundaries. After we married in 2003, our family began to grow with the birth of our first biological son in 2005. We continued to dream of growing and blending our family with a desire to adopt. As we prayed over and explored the many avenues of adoption, we discovered a great need and call from the Lord to help children in foster care. God tells us in the Bible to “care for the orphans” (James 1:27) and we decided to obey His command!

We have journeyed through foster care for six years now, serving many children and families during their time of need. Loving these children is a joy! By fully bringing them into our lives, each little blessing has changed our lives in an amazing and wonderful way.

We have presently grown into a family of seven, with two biological sons ages 8 and 5, a 4 year old son adopted through foster, a 3 year old daughter adopted through foster care, and a 1 year old daughter whose adoption through foster care should be finalized this year.
Building our family in this way has truly allowed us to grow in our walk with Christ, not only to lean on Him for the daily needs of these children, but also outreach to their birth families. We have been blessed with being able to interact with birth families, by putting them at ease knowing their children have two families that love them.

When we got the call for our oldest daughter, she was a tiny, one-week-old baby. She continued to live in the NICU for many more weeks, due to heavy exposure to illegal drugs and alcohol. From the moment we saw her, our hearts were smitten with her sweet little face! For three more weeks we went to the hospital daily to feed her and cuddle her tiny body, always praying that God would continue to help her grow and protect her. We were her only visitors while she was in the NICU. She is a true miracle and we are so thankful that God has given us this sweet blessing through adoption.

Many people ask us how we can let children go that have been in our homes. Our reply is that God uses us to do His work. There is no humanly possible way that we could do this on our own. The Lord guides us through every step of the journey, with His promise that we can “do ALL things through Him who gives us strength.” All of the children in our home are God’s, and He has given us the honor of raising each of these blessings!

It is wonderful to know that we can obediently serve foster children and show them a life changing love. Whether it is for a short time spent in our home, or we become their forever family, we are truly blessed by this journey and experience. Changing one child’s live changes a whole generation.

Foster Care: Mission and Ministry

Friday, May 09, 2014
May is National Foster Care Month. Our blog will feature different foster perspectives throughout the month. Today’s post is written by Lilyfield Foster Care Specialist, Keisha Golden.

James 1:27 says, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” Three powerful words sandwiched between two major ideas, "look after orphans".

James, claims that to practice pure religion is to support children. In fact, in Matthew 19:14, Jesus clearly asked for children to come to Him, for heaven belongs to them. I believe James’ words are applicable to all children, to those whose parents have abandoned them, but especially to those children who parents simply cannot care for them at the moment. These are foster children. 

As a foster care social worker, it is my goal to provide homes for children who are in need of either short term or long term care. I chose this ministry because I am able to prepare, encourage, and support families who directly exemplify the verses above. Foster care is a journey that in many ways can be difficult, but also very rewarding. I love that my mission is to help equip families with the skills and knowledge to nurture and care for children coming from difficult situations.

It is invigorating to not only fulfill this command personally, but to help my fellow Christians fulfill it as well. The compassion shown for the children in Lilyfield homes is something I witness daily and is spiritually encouraging. I chose to make foster care my mission because it is my responsibility to live out James 1:27, to be an active part of the church, and to provide safe and loving foster home for children in care. To look after foster children is not the job of one person, but many, and I am happy to be a part of this mission field.

A Testimony of the Gospel

Thursday, May 01, 2014
Zach, Erin, big sister Reece, and big brothers Jet and Zeb were thrilled with the addition of Abe to their family. Abe was placed into the home through Lilyfield’s foster care program in 2011.

“The addition of Abe has touched every area of our life,” say Zach and Erin.

“He has such a sweet spirit and radiates pure joy. Abe is an answer to our prayers,” says Erin. “We knew going into foster care that our hearts were open to permanency and sharing our life forever with a child if that was God’s will for our family.”

Their church family took an active role in praying for Abe and the family. He quickly had a family and a community of people that loved him. Zach and Erin feel that they have been able to spread the gospel to a child and his biological family who may not have heard it otherwise. They realize that God has entrusted them to care for this baby.

One of the things that Zach and Erin most treasure is the knowledge that Abe is theirs and is an important part of their family. “We grafted him into our family, like Jesus grafted us into His,” says Erin. What a picture of love and acceptance! They love sharing Abe’s story and know they will continue to love sharing his story because it speaks Jesus to others.

“What a testimony we have of the gospel...right here in our arms,” they say.

Zach and Erin can testify that the journey is hard, but the rewards are greater. Children need loving and safe homes where they can grow into confident young people.



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