While still in my career in the apparel and textile industry I began a journey of volunteer leading and creating ministries for foster youth over the course of the next seven years within my home church. I lead camp weekends, Christmas parties, mentor outings, and continued to mentor youth I’d met at camp, as well as strategically helped design new ways to reach kids in need.
I remember one year in particular leading a Christmas party of around 600 kids and caregivers and 300 volunteers. Someone from my team let me know a caregiver was looking for me…me? I thought to myself what is she going to complain about? What did I miss?!
As I went to greet her – she and her soon to be 18 year old foster child youth thanked me…He said this was his last year coming to this event, as he was aging out of the system. He went on to tell me that he had been with this particular foster family for the past five years and the one thing he remembers as a constant every year was this holiday party.
With tears in our eyes I gave him a hug…I have tears in my eyes typing almost a decade later.
This is the start of the journey towards TLF. You see, TLF is really a tapestry, a weaving, of small, but significant stories. Each thread matters. Each play an important role in the coming together of the big picture God had in mind as he brought small…but significant…events, relationships, and circumstances my way.