Our journey started as a business relationship with Running for Greater Things. We sponsored the run because we believed in the cause. Some of our friends were foster parents and had adopted, and we supported their life decisions. Each year, we donated to the cause, but we weren’t considering caring for orphans ourselves. But each year, the race brought orphan care into our thoughts again. Two years ago, the race coincided with our family reading Counter Culture by David Platt. Our children asked us why we weren’t adopting, and Lisa and I had to look each other in the eye and answer that question.
Lisa and I had to look each other in the eye and answer that question
As we were asking ourselves the questions that come with taking others into your home, Fairfield Baptist hosted a panel discussion on adoption, and we got an email inviting us to be a part of it. Lisa and I attended, and the stories propelled us toward one of the greatest challenges of our lives. We became aware of several foster programs and began to choose the organization to help us become foster parents. We chose Arrow Child and Family Services and began the training. In June 2016, our family became licensed and received our first child one week later. We added her brother to our home six weeks after that. Running for Greater Things 2016 had so much more meaning to us personally. We were not just sponsors; we had become a part of the story – the story of God providing for the fatherless, the motherless, the orphan.
We were not just sponsors; we had become a part of the story – the story of God providing
for the fatherless, the motherless, the orphan
Our children were returned to their parents in September 2017, after 15 months with us. It was devastating for us, and we have been mourning our loss. However, we are preparing to open our home again to fostering on Monday, October 23 – two days after Running for Greater Things 2017.
Running for Greater Things pushed us to become foster parents in the first place. It just fits that it would precede us opening our home again to the children God will give us.
Update 2023 from Paul and Lisa:
Wow — the difference six years make in God’s hands! In 2018 we started babysitting our original foster baby and her little sister. Babysitting turned into living with us, and 2019 added their little brother to our home. We will always remember 2020 — the Covid year — as the year God said yes to us and we adopted all three of our babies via Zoom in October. It took the help of our church and Running for Greater Things to make it possible. Today seven-year-old Mayeli, six-year-old Sofie and four-year-old Mateo are Willmons — and are already talking about next year’s Fall Fest!