In February, on the Council Road Women blog we are chatting about several different ways we can show love. Of course we talk about the love that naturally come to mind, like our spouse, but we are also looking at ways to show love to some of the most vulnerable around us. When I think of loving the vulnerable, my friend, Carisa Wilsie immediately comes to mind.
Recently, I had a chance to sit down with Carisa and was so encouraged by the story of her life. She is no stranger to showing love to the vulnerable, as she was raised by parents who weekly brought children in hard situations to church with them. As a teen, she was further exposed to children living with chaos and trauma in her jobs as a lifeguard at the city pool and in a daycare. These early life experiences opened her eyes to the situations many children are forced to grow up in, planting within her the dream of possibly adopting her own children.
Carisa attended college at Oklahoma Baptist University, pursuing the call to ministry that the Lord had placed on her life a previous summer at Falls Creek. She majored in Psychology with plans to help vulnerable children and families. This path included finding her sweet husband Chad (and promptly letting him know she felt called to adopt children one day) then continuing on to postgraduate school. After five years of schooling in Alabama, and Dr. added to her name, Carisa and Chad returned to Oklahoma, where she began making a mark on children's lives, both in the academic world and the community.
It was also around the time she and Chad moved home that the conversations became more serious about expanding their family through adoption. Although Carisa was already convinced God had called her, they waited and prayed as the Lord spoke to Chad’s heart as well. Knowing the foster system intimately, Carisa felt the only place that truly made sense for them to look for their children was through DHS, specifically older children and a sibling set. With such a specific call it didn’t take long for them to be matched and within weeks their family of two became a family of five!
In our conversation, Carisa shares candidly about the early days with her three children, transitions, struggles and the victories along the way. She also offers such practical suggestions to those considering fostering, adopting or supporting families who are already loving vulnerable children. No matter where you are in life, Carisa’s story will encourage you to look around and ask the Lord who you can practically love. I hope you will listen to the entire conversation.
Click the link below to listen to the podcast episode:
What about you? How has the Lord allowed you to love the vulnerable? Maybe you yourself have been in a chaotic or traumatic situation. How did God use His people to meet your needs and show you love?
Meet the Author!
Heather McAnear is a wife, mom, author and speaker with a passion for sharing God's truth to help women understand their uniquely beautiful design and how to use it for God's glory! In fact, Heather hosts the Uniquely Beautiful Stories podcast on iTunes in hopes do just that! She loves teaching young married couples with her husband, homeschooling their three children, traveling the world, enjoying good chocolate and long conversations in coffee shops. CRBC has been her church home for two decades and she is thrilled to be part of the Women's Ministry team, helping women connect with each other and grow in their walk with Jesus!