Last in a series
"The best way to show God how much we love Him is to love His people. We're commanded to take care of one another."
Brown, who has been involved with local non-profit Homes of Hope of Bedford County since its infancy, now serves as the president of its board.
He and wife Ranea are in training to become one of the first five certified Homes of Hope host families in Bedford County.
"It will mean some significant changes in what our daily lives look like," said Brown.
"But through this process Ranea and I hope to be able to teach our three boys what it means to serve, what it means to take care of people, what loving people really looks like."
Host families first fill out an application and undergo a background check and screening. Training for families is extensive -- but is available online. After a home visit, the family may be certified to begin accepting children.
Applicants must be over the age of 25 and be emotionally stable, mature and law-abiding. Host families must not abuse drugs or alcohol and should refrain from profanity and other potentially damaging behavior, and must be sufficiently healthy and active enough to keep up with the demands of hosting a child.
Homes of Hope is built on the Safe Families model, and in Tennessee is part of the Bethany Christian Services network.
A national organization with partners in 13 states, Safe Families considers itself, "a movement of hundreds of families of faith who have opened their homes to care for children whose parents are struggling."
Founder Missy Parsons knows that success of the effort will come only when embraced and adopted by local churches, and she's begun an outreach effort in one-on-one sessions with church leaders and presentations to congregations.
Local ministries and churches will be key in coordinating area resources, identifying children in need of services and developing host families.
"Being a Homes of Hope host family will allow them to show love to God's most precious possession: a child. They will have an opportunity to pour love into the child when they are the most fragile," said Brown.
Not only in the life of the child, but in the child's family -- and in their own.
"Over time, if my boys are able to grasp these concepts and begin to live them out, then my family will be truly blessed by the experience," he said.
For more information, call (931) 205-6869, go to http://www.safe-families.org, http://www.bethany.org/nashville, or the Facebook page Homes of Hope of Bedford County ( https://www.facebook.com/pages/Homes-of-... )