It's no secret. I've been a big ol hot mess lately.
Let me try to explain. Beau and I have now been on the adoption road a YEAR today. 365 days. In my heart, it's been since the 3rd grade that I knew I wanted to walk this road. The older I got, the more I started to learn what it would entail.
Well, we are now 10 days out from leaving on a gigantic plane, and heading across the ocean to our children. For me, it's a reunion I literally dream about. For my husband, it's the first time he will lay eyes on, and hold in his arms, our son and daughter.
That's the thing, they're "ours" in every sense, BUT the legal sense. We have loved them since before we've known who they were. We have prayed for them before we knew there would be two, before we knew they would be a boy and girl. We have longed for them before we ever saw a photograph of them. And let me tell you, it's only intensified since SEEING their photos, and for me, since HOLDING them in my arms and kissing their cheeks.
Most of you know that this trip is the first of two. (Not counting my trip I took this summer to visit them, our attorney, etc) This is a two week trip. When we land, the next morning we will embark on the 4-5 hour trip to where the kids live. We will be there about three days before we head back to the capitol city. We will spend another three days there to: appear before the high courts (a judge), and a few other legalities. We will finish our trip off back in the kids' home town before coming back to the US.
Some families will stay and do one long trip. With our jobs, and the living expenses in Africa, and not to mention the expenses here, that don't stop just because you're in Africa....we can't do that. So we come back here, try to return to normal, and wait for the judges ruling. We are fervently praying we have a favorable ruling and that every single (multitudes) little detail falls in place for that process. It can take 2-4 weeks to hear/receive the written ruling.
Lord willing, when we hear that approved ruling, I book a one way ticket back to our babies. This second trip would require us (me) to be there anywhere from 6-8 weeks. (Hence the unknown timing for a "return" ticket!) Could be less. Could me much more. We don't know. Beau will stay here to work and begin a new beginning for us, by providing for a family of four on his income alone.
I tell you all of this because we are
1.) so immensely excited to see the kids, and complete the next step of them becoming ours, but also
2.) I am terrified. Remember the "hot mess" part I mentioned earlier?
Let me explain.
The majority of my life I knew I wanted to adopt. I believe The Lord put it on my heart at the young age of 9. I believe God Almighty worked in my heart and Beau's to be "one" in our desire to start our family through adoption. I believe my love for Africa and the people of Africa came from Jesus as well, that He orchestrated my trip to Malawi in 2011 to prepare my heart for the culture and expose me to all the beauty that, is Africa. I believe He brought us to Miss L and our agency, and the exact children that we have been loving far longer than 365 days.
But now we're "there". We are to the point where the rubber meets the road. Where I have to overcome the fear of losing them, the fear of bonding and attaching and loving and playing with and hugging and smooching the kids, pouring my all into them....and something (a gazillion things?). going. wrong. Loving them so much that my heart will break. I feel like I can't "breathe" or sigh with relief until we are riding down the escalator to Beau, at the airport.
It's THEE MOST vulnerable I've ever been in my entire life. This season has been the most refining, sanctifying, STRETCHING season I've ever been through in my 25 going on 26 years of life.
All of the paperwork, notarizing, fundraising, praying, preparing, emails, lawyers, prayers, investigators, social worker, fees, are coming to this.
The last few months.
I'm realizing that this is the most my faith has ever been tested and tried. Do I trust that God has my best interest at His heart? Do I trust that He makes things new? Do I trust that He defends the cause of the orphans? Do I trust that He loves them more than Beau or I ever could? Do I trust that He loves ME endlessly? Do I trust that He will carry me through every trial and fear? Do I trust that if I surrender to Him, He will give me a PEACE that passes all human comprehension, in a "time" like this?
Do I trust....that HE, and He alone, is ENOUGH?
Even if something goes "wrong", I know the answer. I know that my God is still good. My God still reigns. I will still love, strive to honor, and to live for Him.
I believe that when God called us to adopt, when He called us to follow Him....to pick our cross up and follow Him daily....that it means to love with abandon. To love till it hurts. To pour everything out, to anyone we encounter, really. And in this season, especially these children.
I will daily choose to surrender my little boy and my little girl, to my Father in Heaven. Like Abraham with Isaac. Like Hannah with Samuel.
I have prayed for them and prayed for them, and I will continually give them back to Jesus. They're His. They are a gift to us, from Him.
I am thankful for this trial. It's exhausting. The unknown. The inability to "plan", the uncertainty. The Enemy presses hard for me to listen to his lies and doubt and worry he whispers.....But let me tell you, it has brought me closer to Jesus. It has caused me to realize on a multitude of levels, my DESPERATE need for Him.
I believe it's also caused me to see (thank you Sarah) even a glimpse into God the Father, and His love for His Son Jesus.
I am so thankful Jesus went through, and endured what He did on the cross for me and for you. The ultimate sacrificial act of love. I am so faithless, I am so up and down with my emotions. I am one minute madly and deeply in love with Jesus and the next a quivering, worrisome, panicked mess the next. It's a constant battle of taking my thoughts captive.
But He's still there. He still loves me. He still pursues me. He forgives me. He is right there with open arms waiting for me to come back and to lay my burdens at His feet. I don't have to 'go this' alone.
Thank you Father, for giving us this road to walk, with You. Help me to trust you. To walk by Faith, no matter the cost. Give us the strength to love like you love us. I give you my fears and worries.
I want to know You more.
Jesus, breathe within.
Lord have your way in me.
I surrender. Over and over. Day by day. Moment by moment. I love you. May you be glorified through us and this story you are weaving throughout our messy lives.
Our Hope is in You.
C&M, we are coming for you.