Remember that mountain I last wrote about? (Yeah, sorry it’s been while…) You know, the one where I was sitting at the base of it and waiting to climb? I was convinced within myself that the climb would soon begin and we would finally reach the pinnacle and breathe that huge sigh and feeling of completion in our adoption process. And then God stepped in.
It turns out, that wasn’t our mountain after all. As a matter of fact, He took us to an entirely different mountain altogether. I did not see it coming.
We have been in the adoption process now for two years. We have changed agencies three times and countries four times. Oh adoption, if only you could be simple. Spoiler alert: adoption is never simple. But that’s ok. Adoption is a journey, not a sprint.
The other day I found myself in a bit of a predicament. I had washed my hair and just finished drying it when my 12 year old decided to come in and spar brushes with me. Always aspiring to be a “fun mom”, I battled back with my hairdryer and we giggled and enjoyed a sweet moment together. It was in that moment of giggles and fun that my son decided it would be a good idea to attack mom’s newly dried hair with a rolly brush. All at once I found myself irreversibly tangled. Our game had stopped being funny. While I assessed the situation, my poor child hid in my closet behind the door, peering at me with his bright blue eyes and wondering if Mom was going to be mad or not. I asked him to give me a few minutes uninterrupted while I began the task of untangling my hair.
It might look harmless but I was stuck! I’ve never been tangled up quite like that and a series of thoughts and emotions started to run through me. I tend to be claustrophobic so there were moments of panic and “get me out of this mess!”. There were also moments of total aggravation and complete impatience. I knew would cause a lot of damage and pain if I tried to yank everything out at once but I just wanted to be free from the process of getting untangled.
Before we were called on this adoption journey for the second time, our lives had adjusted to our new normal and life was pretty playful overall. And then the call from God came to our hearts and we quickly began to feel tangled in all of the details that adoption requires. There is peace on the other side of that “yes” but oh so many details once it’s said. Over the course of these past two years I have had many moments of “Get me out of this mess!!”, moments of aggravation and overall complete impatience. I have experienced moments of resentment toward God for all of the redirection. I have also resented the process itself: the endless paperwork and red tape. Just when I think I have checked all the boxes and see light at the end of the tunnel, we experienced another curveball and have to start all over again. My heart has longed for completion in all of this. My heart longs to embrace the child that I am meant to steward this side of Heaven. This process is such a roller coaster of feelings.
The truth is, my feelings have been far too many and far too scattered to process in my own mind much less to those around me. I confess I have allowed myself to be tossed around in my feelings for longer than I should. I have allowed myself to get to a really yucky place that I’m not proud of. In my humanness and frustration, I got to a place where I was angry with God for the constant tumult and upheaval. I became weary from the uncertainty. I acted like a bad child. Jesus really needed to put me in “time out”. I did not want to pray or read my Bible. I was done. I was completely tangled up in my own flesh.
God always seems to have funny ways of getting my attention. As I remained tangled in my rolly brush, I began to understand that the only way I was going to successfully untangle my hair was one little strand at a time. There was no way of expediting the untangling process. I just had to stop and discipline myself to go slowly and complete the task. God took those moments of pause to speak to my heart and remind me that He is working out our adoption story one little strand at a time. He speaks so simply and perfectly to the point. I cannot expedite this adoption process. I have to simply discipline myself to go through the steps one little strand at a time.
God lovingly reminded me that day that every single step we have walked through to this point and going forward continues to change and prepare our hearts for the life He has planned for us. All of the training and education has taught us to be better parents to the three kids we are already parenting as well as preparing us to parent the next one He has for us. All of these strands and steps continue to be His perfect timing until He releases that final strand and we call our family complete.
“You are being guarded by God’s power through faith for a salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. You rejoice in this, even though now for a short time, if necessary, you suffer grief in various trials so that the proven character of your faith – more valuable than gold, which, though perishable, is refine by fire – may result in praise, glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.”
- 1 Peter 1:5-7
I love that promise that we are being guarded by God’s power through faith! As I trudge along, often not graciously, I still remember that my callings are all for His glory no matter the trials I face. And so, we continue on until our salvation is revealed.