Well, life has been a bit crazy. I don’t even know where to start. I don’t even know how much to explain. I want to explain everything so you can hear my stress and then be like, “Oh Liz, how are you handling all this?” because if I’m honest, I want your admiration. I want you to think I’m kick ass and super strong. And because that is a weakness of mine, I want to purposefully not go there. Especially since, I’m really not handling all of this completely well (just ask my husband and my realtor…they see the breakdowns). But is this post going there? I don’t know, if it is I guess God will let me know when I’m ready to hear it.
But, I do know I need your prayer. And I also know, I want to express my hope and excitement. I might not post this until I know one way or the other, but I want to write this in the moment so I can capture my current thoughts.
We have some updates: Our house is under contract and we have put a contract on a house in Annapolis. Everything seemed like it was going to go through and then we randomly had an issue. Our buyers were thinking of walking. The issue just didn’t seem right though, it seemed like a mistake. Ok, I’m getting off track, that’s not the point. We fixed the issue. Everything seemed to line up again, and then…
We got an email from the adoption agency. They wanted our permission to show our profile to a couple with a very unique case. We said, “yes.” Nothing is set in stone. We don’t even know if the couple will pick us. I’m in the adoption version of the TWW (two week wait between ovulation and when you can take a pregnancy test). It’s really early to talk about, but I’m so excited. I’m dreaming of the nursery and cuddles and introductions. I’m dreaming of the baptisms, yes baptismS, because they are twins. I’m dreaming of the songs I will sing, and the spit up I will be covered in, and the exhausted mornings from being up all night comforting the cries of two precious babies.
But I’m also worried. How is this all going to line up? The timing of all of this seems impossible! We have to move, get our new house approved by the agency (water tests, fire marshal survey, and a new home inspection), and the second we are out of our current home we are out of the adoption pool until we can get the new home approved. But as long as we are in our current home we can be matched. If we get matched before we move then we can still have placement in the new home as long as we can get all the paperwork done before the placement occurs. I can’t even begin to go through possible timelines of things, because everything is constantly changing.
Just yesterday it seemed like everything was going to go through with the houses and then we heard that the buyers were not happy with the solution we had come up with and unless we did something else they were thinking of walking away, again…. So the timeline went completely wonky again and I gave up trying to figure it out.
So here I am, confused, excited, and hopeful. And my hope is greater than any hope I’ve ever had before, because this time I have a knowledge that surpasses understanding. This time I know that if it doesn’t work out and I must grieve another loss (or two), that I will not remain in that place of sorrow. I know who my savior is, I know how much he loves me, and I know he will rescue me from my disappointment and sorrow. He will restore me. I know it because I have experienced it. He has been faithful for seven years of grief. He has been faithful longer than that, but that is only how long I have had this struggle.
I am hoping. I am putting my hope in the Lord and in his goodness. There is something about this circumstance that seems completely beyond anything I could imagine or facilitate or control, and so it must be up to God. And there is something about that that gives me peace and hope beyond what I have ever known before.
I naively thought that my hope would extend to everyone around me, but it doesn’t. I see you out there doubting, I see you worried about me, I see you trying to tame my hopes and prepare me for disappointment.
Stop worrying so much.
I know you are doing this out of love for me, and I appreciate that, but it seems like you might be letting your fear overcome your faith. Disappointment won’t kill me, I’ve been disappointed many times before and I’m still alive! In fact, the more disappointment I have had the more I have found my joy in the only thing that can never disappoint: Jesus!
I’m excited. I’m happy. I’m hopeful! You can try and protect yourself, but please stop trying to protect me from disappointment. I don’t need your protection, I have the best protection: Jesus Christ. He is with me right now. He keeps saying, “I got this. You don’t have to figure out how, you just have to say, ‘yes’.”
I’m saying, “yes!”
Whatever he is offering to me in this situation, I say, “Yes! Yes, God! Yes, Father! May it be done as you have said! May it be done as you have said! May it be done as you’ve shown us through Jesus!”
I’m not trying to change your mind. You can feel whatever it is you feel. I’m just letting you know that God has got this, and he has got me, and he has got these houses, and he has got these babies, and he is the only one who I want to have this and so I am putting all my eggs in His basket.
I am at a bend in the road and I’m not going to slow down and creep to the corner and crane my neck around the bend to try and see what lies ahead before I dance with praise and excitement. I’m dancing in the road, and praising my God because whatever lies around this bend doesn’t really matter. What matters is that he is good! And I want to experience whatever lies beyond this bend with Him by my side. I’m running toward it! If beyond lies a dragon, I’m prepared because I have the God of angel armies by my side! If what lies beyond is a sunrise, I’m going to experience as much of it as I can, and not waste a moment worrying instead of witnessing its beauty.
Well, that was fast. I wrote the above post yesterday morning (but didn’t post it) and now this morning I write to tell you the birth mother has decided to parent her twins. What wonderful news for her and her children.
Yes, I am sad for me.
No, I have not lost hope.
God is so good to me. Yesterday, I read the book of Philemon. I never read that book before and it was exactly what I needed to hear. This book is about how every movement we make in response to God has a ripple effect. In Philemon 1:10-16, Paul says, “While here in jail, I’ve fathered a child, so to speak. And here he is, hand-carrying this letter-Onesimus. He was useless to you before; now he’s useful to both of us. I’m sending him back to you, but it feels like I’m cutting off my right arm in doing so. I wanted in the worst way to keep him here as your stand-in to help out while I’m in jail for the Message. But I didn’t want to do anything behind your back, make you do a good deed that you hadn’t willingly agreed to. Maybe it’s all for the best that you lost him for a while. You’re getting him back now for good—and no mere slave this time, but a true Christian brother! That’s what he was to me—he’ll be even more than that to you.”
I know this seems like a weird a verse, but Paul understands the joy and sorrow of my loss. He understands the prayers for the one who doesn’t quite know the gift that they have. He understands that his purpose does not override Philemon’s purpose, that God’s call for Paul does not counteract Philemon’s call from God, or Onesimus’ call from God, but instead their calls all join together and interact in a way that only God can facilitate.
God has shown me over and over again that he uses me as a prayer warrior for these mothers and their children. His glory is so beautiful! He allows me to be a part of their lives and they don’t even know. He connects me to these families in the most intimate of ways: through union with God. What a blessing to me! It is not a blessing you can see, it is simply known.
Yesterday, I prayed for the mom of these twins. I prayed for her, and my prayers for her broke my own heart because they went against everything my physical, mental, and emotional body wanted.
“Lord, make your strength known to her; help her to see that she can do this with You as her guide. Her babies need her, Lord, help her to see that, help her to see that you have chosen her for them. And Lord, if she can’t see that then let her know you will provide a loving family for her babies.”
It wasn’t a surprise to me when I received the email saying that this mother had decided to raise her children. It still hurt, but it wasn’t a surprise. And then a huge storm rolled in and I felt like God and I were fighting together. I felt like my prayers were fights against the evil one. I felt like God wept for me as we fought for her and her children. I can’t even explain it. My physical body simply sat there watching the storm rage around me, while my spiritual body wielded the sword of truth alongside the armies of angels and Jesus my king. I wept and prayed and fought. The darkness was so great and ominous and yet, I felt completely at peace in the outcome. I had said, “yes” to my purpose, and in that I found joy beyond sorrow, peace beyond circumstance, and a will to keep going, to keep hoping, to keep fighting, to keep loving, and to experience the beauty of the storm.
This morning I asked the Lord what he wanted to tell me today. He said, “Isaiah.” He knows me so well, Isaiah is my comfort book. Isaiah is where I go when I don’t know where to start. I opened up to Isaiah and began to read Chapter 26. It’s amazing how good God is.
Isaiah 26:3-4 says, “People with their minds set on You, you keep completely whole, steady on their feet, because they keep at it and don’t quit. Depend on God and keep at it because in the Lord God you have a sure thing.”