CARTHAGE, Texas – Jim and Linda Kimberly were sitting on the porch on Easter Sunday, watching their youngest son Jared play with his cousins, when they felt the call.
“Jim said, ‘You know, I’d like to take up the idea of fostering,’” Linda recalled. “So we did it. We just really felt called to it.”
The couple’s three oldest children had already moved out, Jim said. “We’ve been very blessed with a nice, large house. We have everything we’ve ever wanted or needed. And it was just time to give back.”
The Kimberlys have fostered many children in their home, and each time the children were eventually reunited with their family.
“The hardest part of fostering is letting them go,” Linda said. “Because you fall in love with every single child to some extent. And some touch you so deeply that you feel like there’s been a death in the family. But you have to let them go; that’s just what you do.”
One time, after four of her foster children went back to live with their birth family, Linda said she stood in her closet and cried.
“I was heartbroken,” she said. “I prayed to God, saying, ‘Please send me some that I can keep.’ And two weeks later Ethan and Alisa showed up. And when God answers you that clearly, you better not say no!”
The Kimberlys fostered siblings Ethan, 6, and Alisa, 4, and are now in the process to adopt them through Buckner foster-to-adopt services. Both children come from families where alcohol, drugs and violence were prevalent.
“Ethan is challenged by his past,” Linda said. “When he came to live with us, he just had no sense of being a little boy – letting his guard down. After he had been with us for about six months, I started to see little bits and pieces of the child he was intended to be. It was absolutely the biggest blessing to be able to be there and see that.”
Alisa, too, was very detached when she arrived. “Now she would probably superglue herself to my hip,” Linda laughed. “I am her mommy. She knows this, and I like it too. They’re both such great kids.”
Their future is much brighter now that they are safe and secure in a family, Jim said.
To learn more about the ways you can be a family through Buckner foster care and adoption, visit www.beafamily.org or call Mark Hayes at 903-757-9383.
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