Tess Dykstra exudes love for Jesus and people. Those closest to her know her for her honesty, hospitality, grace, and forgiveness. She is the real deal—someone who is continually seeking ways to learn and grow. Her approach to foster care is guided by her faith, which offers her the perspective that we are all on a level playing field. We are all in need of a Savior.
Since God opened her eyes to her sinful condition and His grace, the Gospel has been a central theme of her life. She shared that she’s learned to “fight hard to not move past the truth of my need for Jesus, once for salvation and daily for sanctification.”
Tess and her husband, Alex, are foster parents. This role has taught them much about their own need for the Holy Spirit. Through the Spirit’s work, they are empowered to love kids, caseworkers, and biological parents. Earthly relationships can be messy, yet Tess and Alex live with the hope they find in an almighty, good, perfect God and the promise of eternity.
“We navigated really tough seasons of foster care and have seen areas that foster parents need help. Our church has filled gaps for our needs without an established system or partnership with the foster system.” Tess decided to jump into the role of a TFI Advocate to help her church build on this support for others involved with foster care.
“As a current foster parent, I have seen so many ways the local church can step in and provide support to the foster care community. Often they don’t know how to enter into the foster space and are scared to take the plunge (or just oblivious to the need). It breaks my heart that churches aren’t almost synonymous with the foster ‘system.’ I get excited when I see the Church answer the hard call that God has clearly placed on us as Believers to care for the marginalized.”
Tess desires to bring awareness of foster care and the needs of her community in Marietta, GA, and to help others get involved in supporting families.
Tess and her family attend StoneBridge Church of Marietta, and she continues to learn from and connect with Cobb County DCFS.
You can check out her ministry at cobbga.tfiadvocate.org.