I will bow down toward Your holy temple And give thanks to Your name for Your lovingkindness and Your truth; For You have magnified Your word according to all Your name.
I shall worship in the temple of your holiness and I shall give thanks to your Name for your kindness and for your truth, because you have extolled your Word above every name!
I bow down toward your holy temple and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness, for you have exalted above all things your name and your word.
What began as a flutter and quickening of life in our home, as we felt the surge of expectation at adopting has slowly become a wandering of sorts in the wilderness, with determined hope of a Promised Land. The longer I journey, the more books I read about adoption, attachment, the mind-numbing climate of international adoption, the more I am convinced that Jesus Christ alone is the Promised Land in this adoption. Not two precious children, no longer orphans, but Jesus Himself. This adoption process has opened my eyes; one minute I am afraid, and the very next, I find comfort in the shadow of His wings; I am literally lifted to a Rock higher than myself. That is a safe place to be.
This blog has been a reminder of words that I can’t find most days. For someone who loves language and words as I do, it is baffling to discover that my soul journey to our newest children has been mostly unwritable for me. (is that even a word? See what I mean!)
The dossier paperwork was an act of obedience and a reminder of my weakness in ticking off lists and re-doing what I had already done what seemed like a hundred times. I realized my terribly pouty tendencies to rebel against the whole system by procrastinating at miniscule tasks that at the time felt insurmountable. By the time we actually made it to the waiting list just before Christmas, I didn’t feel so much victorious as completely whipped.
If only I had known that the emotional preparation would be more difficult than the paperwork.
How does one prepare a home for someone who may initially reject the very fabric of our family? How do I prepare my heart for little ones, older than their years marked by pain and loss, who might block my attempts to love them; who might bite and kick and spit to push me away to reject me loud and clear, a reflexive survival mechanism of the soul. As I read of the wounds of young children whose attachment has been disrupted by neglect, abuse, or abandonment, my heart and mind cannot grasp the effects of such pain on such a tiny person. There are days I think “WHAT ARE WE DOING?” My prayers go something like this, “Father, I can’t do this! I am too weak. I struggle as a mom to healthy children! Father, I can’t….” And always, always, always, I hear the Spirit of the Living God remind me deep of His word, magnified above all names, above my fear. I am reminded of the Gospel, the Good News, that in my weakness, He is strong. “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
Each moment my wandering heart is scooped up and placed firmly on the Rock that is higher than I…the Rock that is mighty to deliver, mighty to save, mighty to sustain. He will never leave me or forsake me. His heart is for the orphan. He alone is the refuge for my soul.
I pray every day, every quiet moment it seems, for the God who has numbered the hairs on my head, the God who has breathed life into the depths of darkness in my soul, into the rocky soil of our marriage, into the physical and spiritual bodies of my three children, that this God would be at work in Ethiopia, healing the brokenness and pain of two tiny hearts that we would be blessed to call our children. The Word is magnified above my fears. Jesus is magnified above all the worse-case scenarios and God can do anything He wants to in our family. I sit here in this holy temple, surrounded by yesterday’s toys, someone’s socks, and sunlight filtering through dust, and know the presence of a Word that is exalted in this place.