It was this week 2 years ago that we learned of major changes in the Ethiopia program. We learned that the process was going to slow down and that there could potentially be a waiting time of "years". We had already been in the process for 9 months (with paperwork and home study), on the waitlist for 3 of those months, and I can remember the way I felt like it was yesterday. We were devestated. I couldn't quit crying. I was asking "why?" more than I would like to admit and I was angry. We had already "wasted" so much of our time and money trying to get pregnant again. Then God called us to adopt and guess what? We were excited about it. We gave up our dream of more biological children and accepted God's plan for us to adopt. So why in the world was He allowing this to happen? This delay, this heartache, this series of unknown events....why? And on top of that, what were we going to do? How could we wait for years? Were we on the wrong path? Was our child somewhere else?
Devestated and confused.
(You can read some of the posts I wrote around that time HERE)
But you want to know what else I remember about that time? I remember how so many of you rallied around us. You prayed with us and for us. You signed a petition. You wrote me notes of encouragement. You loved us well.
I also remember my God who loved us well. My God who calmed me down and reminded me that He was/is in control. My God who assured us multiple times that we were on the right path and that our child is indeed in Ethiopia. My God who has continually met our needs from day to day and given us the strength to endure. My God who has helped us to find joy and purpose in this wait.
Obviously we are still waiting. 2 years and 9 months since we started this process (2 years and 3 months on the waitlist) and still no baby. And we are still more than ready. And we are still tired. And we are still longing. But there is one thing we are not still doing. We are not asking "why?" anymore.
And not because we fully know the answer to the question "Why?" We may never fully know until we meet our Savior face to face. But that unrest that used to be in my heart is not there.
Oh, I still get frustrated. And I even still get angry sometimes. And every single day I tear up and long for our child. Then there are the times that I wrestle with God over the wait and the time frames, over my desire to be in control.
But when it comes to the overall journey that we are on, in some way, I really think I have peace.
You know in scripture when it talks about "a peace that passeth all understanding" (Philippians 4:7)? Well, that's the one. I think I've got it.
Not every moment of every day. But it's there. And in the times when I'm struggling for control, when I'm frustrated over the passing time, the Holy Spirit really and truly fills me with that peace. And He reminds me that there has already been great purpose in this journey, and that the best is yet to come.
And I believe that. I believe that the best is coming. Even if hard is mingled with the good. I believe God has his best in store for us. And I can't wait to see it!
One day when this child is home and when he/she is old enough to ask me "Why? Why did you wait?", I know some things that I can tell him/her for sure.
Because God's will is more powerful than my own.
Because my heart needed work and my Heavenly Father was gracious enough to take the time to do a major work in me.
Because God wanted to open my eyes (and your daddy's and Hayes') to the orphan crisis and He wanted us to know that life is not about us.
Because God the Father wanted me to know God the Son in a deeper, more intimate way.
Because there is a power in prayer that I wasn't experiencing because until YOU I really hadn't been on my knees, not really.
Because I needed to cling to Jesus and not let go.
Because God wanted us to experience the JOY that comes through pain.
Because God wanted me to learn how to love others and He did that by sending others to love us well.
Because my entire view of life, of others, and of this world needed to change.
Because God wanted us to let go of our plans and embrace His.
Because He had created YOU for our family since the beginning of time and he was weaving our stories together.
Because you are mine.
Because you are worth it.
You were worth every tear, every delay, every minute of the wait. You. Were. Worth. It.
And one day when I am telling our child these things I will know the answer to the biggest question I have right now.
Because, at this moment in time, that is my biggest struggle. That's what I wrestle with now. Wondering when.
And to tell you the truth, I think it's time!
Praying that the Lord moves mountains in Ethiopia, that he changes hearts of leaders (all over the world), that he removes bars of iron (Isaiah 45), that he knocks down gates and opens doors, that he provides paperwork and sets our child and many others FREE. And that through it all, the world will see that HE alone is God and that He alone deserves all the glory, honor and praise.
Pray with me??