I was at a shower a few weeks ago and the host had each person go around the room to explain how they knew the "mom to be" except this was a baby shower with a twist. This "mom to be" was waiting to get the call to travel to Korea to bring her daughter home, a daughter she has been waiting five years for. So for this reason the sharing portion of the shower was much more personal than most showers I have been to. Of the fifteen women present only two of us made it through our introductions without crying. Each introduction was more like sharing a short story and most of those short stories were inlayed with various versions of faith being strengthened or bonds tightened because of watching this women walk out her faith.
As I sat listening to each women talk, I felt the spirit of God whisper to me " This is what obedience does" and "This is what being willing to do what I ask of you looks like". Soon it was my turn to share and I was definitely one of the criers. I cried because I too had been in the same place the mom to be was currently in, the waiting, anticipation, excitement and fear. The past four years have changed me, my thinking and my faith.
The rest of the shower went great with presents, food, laughter and fellowship but I have not been able to get what the Lord spoke to me off my mind. I just keep marveling at how God uses my son's life and her daughter's life to touch others. I have been thinking about how different things could have looked if either of our families had given up the adoption process. If we had decided this grueling process was too much, how not fulfilling the call He placed on our lives could have changed others lives. You see, when we are obedient to God, it becomes a catalyst for Him to move. His plans will get accomplished in one way or another but if we are willing to be obedient and step out in faith what else gets accomplished? I believe that other peoples lives can be transformed and changed, people we don't even know. By saying yes to God we open the path for Him to use our life stories to influence others.
I know this to be true because all the women who shared at the shower said that watching this families adoption journey had in one way or another proven God's faithfulness to them or made Him more real in their lives. I have had similar stories shared with me during our journey of adoption as well. People who I have never meant have read my blog about trusting God through our adoption and on more than one occasion I have received letters from people expressing that what the Holy Spirit led me to share had helped them take a step of faith and act on what God was calling them to do. So in this particular journey that has caused tears, heartache, pain, joy, smiles and relief I have learned that the most important factor is obedience.
Being Obedient is hard, it means not getting our way and not always understanding the way He has chosen for us. It means trusting. But ultimately by doing what He has asks of us it means that we will be in His will and that is the safest and best place the be. When I am in His will I can hear His voice speaking to me which is so vitally important as I parent both my sons. I can be the mother He called me to be and help them navigate their lives by pointing them to Jesus and lets be honest, I could use all the help I can get. This parenting gig is hard but then to throw in adoption, bonding, racial issues and cultural differences on top of it....sheesh! I need to make sure my heart is at a place of obedience at all times so I can be ready for the hard questions, the fear, the anger that will no doubt come because as redemptive and beautiful as adoption is, it is painful. My sweet boy who has been through so much already in his young life will encounter more as he grows and he will be looking for truth, love and guidance.
As we close out this month of Adoption Awareness, I encourage you to be listening to what He has called you to, if you choose to obey, it will change your life!
I realized that because we were never able to post anything online before getting Charlie home, I never posted pictures of our first meeting him. Here are some pictures of our first meeting. This is what walking out obedience can look like:
Finally got him to come sit by me
He let Ron hold him too
This was the at the adoption agency on our second visit. He was looking at pictures of Greyson on my phone.
This is right before we had to say goodbye and did not know yet when we would be back to get him but God was so faithful in that situation as well.