The Short of It
A Florida pastor and his wife adopt two homeless toddlers they found outside their church.
Pastor Ronnie Stewart and his wife, Krystal, were pretty concerned when they realized a homeless family with two toddler boys was camped out under the awning of their Florida church on a stormy night last November.
"We were working all day at the church," writes Krystal on the couple's GoFundMe page. "And I couldn't help but notice the tiny face of a toddler staring in at us through the glass doors. His younger brother lay strapped in a stroller next to their parents for an estimated 10 hours that day. It gripped my heart. The family, along with another man, camped out under the awning of the church all day. It was evident at that time that the children were in need, and I knew we were placed in this community to meet needs."
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So they asked the parents if they could take the two boys home so they didn't have to suffer outside.
"Our hearts were breaking as evening came," Krystal said. "We began imagining the night these boys were about to have as we were getting ready to go home to a warm, dry house."
The boys' parents—who Krystal says were high and refused to go to a shelter—agreed.
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"Within 5 minutes of driving down the road, the rain began to fall," Krystal recalled. "I couldn't help but stare in my rear view mirror amazed and overwhelmed that God provided a refuge for these boys and chose to use my home to do so. After returning them to their parents Saturday, we prayed as a family that God would protect the sweet boys and always provide a shelter for them."
Krystal says she never dreamed that shelter would be with her and her husband. But when the boys' parents were told by a social worker that their toddlers were headed to foster care, they asked the Stewarts if they would take them in temporarily.
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Although the Stewarts already have three children, the couple didn't hesitate to open their hearts and their home. Then last month, the couple asked the Stewarts to adopt them.
The Stewart family—now seven strong!—has set up a GoFundMe page, which has already raised over $22,000, to help with expenses.
"Our prayer is that our story inspires others to also take generous leaps of faith when your moment arises," writes Krystal, who recently had a hysterectomy and didn't think she'd ever have any more children.
A truly beautiful story that could have had a very different, much darker ending. Blessings all around!