My friends have given a good deal of good natured ribbing lately. It seems I am not myself. I have been late to several recent events. I am not available for long phone conversations and am usually distracted while on a short phone conversation. Trying to get on my schedule requires a near Herculean effort. My house is dusty, my refrigerator is a science experiment, and the floors have entered uncharted sticky territory! I made a late house payment, the first in the 17 years of our home ownership. I have lost more items in the last two months than in all my previous years combined. If they give me information and I am not writing it down I claim no responsibility for it. If I write it down, there is only a 50 percent chance that I will be able to find the paper and understand what I wrote. My pantry is a disaster. There are bags under my eyes and I am exhausted by 5 PM. There is no longer a need to count sheep. All of my clothing has become stained and I frequently find myself disheveled. I can not remember if I put make up on or not and have left the house several times only to discover it was not. This is not the life I have carefully cultivated. It is stressful, wild, sometime out of control, and more wonderful than I ever thought possible. I sit down in a rocking chair with their little warm bodies cuddled in close to mine, feeling them fall asleep and I thank God for the opportunity to touch these little lives.
Some people have admired what we are doing and even gone so far as to say we are attempting to earn our sainthood. Others fall back on the special person clause. The same clause is used to cover home schooling and staying married and faithful. It is usually preceded by the comment that they could never do whatever it is you are doing. Neither would be true. I am not trying to earn sainthood. I can't earn my way to heaven because Christ has died for my sins. I am not a special person. I am an ordinary sinner, saved by grace who is trying to live her life out as a follower of Christ. The only thing special about me is that Christ lives in me!
Another friend asked me how I was protecting my heart in case the babies are returned to their parents. I am not. I have given them my whole heart, just as Christ gave his whole life, for them. If Christ could fill me with such love to share, then he will be with me through whatever he has in store for me. It is a soul searching thing to have what your heart has desired for so long, and then have to ask, what if. What if God is only giving them to me for a season. What if they have to go back. Can I give them back and still love God? Could my heart survive such pain and loss without bitterness at God taking root? I have to trust that if that is God's plan, he will walk with me through it. God and I are on a journey together.
The journey started 11 years ago when I accepted Christ and he changed me from a feminist working woman into a woman who loves her husband, her children and her home. I did not know at one point in my life that children were a blessing from a God and by the time I had discovered this truth we had already taken steps to ensure that we would not have any more. It has been eight years on this leg of the journey. We would discuss adoption, reversals, foster care off and on over the years but never seemed to be in the same place and at the same time. Finally last fall we were in agreement that we would pursue foster care and hopefully, adoption. We signed up to take the required classes. Ten weeks of three hour classes for a total of thirty hours. A home inspection and hours of one on one time with a social worker who would create our home study. By January we were licensed and waiting for the phone to ring.
I spent a lot of time waiting. Eight years waiting for the door to open for the opportunity. Thirty hours of class waiting to be licensed and now the wait would continue. The phone would ring, but not bear fruit for various reasons. Raising hopes, dashing hopes. Hours of prayer, waiting. I learned that I wanted God's will more than my own. And I waited.