Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Life, Told By Arella

Sometimes we fall down.  It hurts and many times it leaves a mark, maybe even a scar.

Sometimes after the fall we try to play tough, hold in the hurt, and put on a face that makes everyone think we're stronger than the pain.

Sometimes we just feel like we're trapped.

Sometimes we put on such a good show that people don't realize buried deep the pain still lingers.

Sometimes we just want to blend in so people won't notice.

Sometimes it just makes us want to curl up and pretend like it never happened.

But there is one thing that can change it all...

When out of the depths we cry out to the Lord, He hears us.

He is our strength when we are weak.  He carries us through the storm.

He cleanses us of our messes because we can't do it ourselves.

He rescues us.

He gives us rest.

When He begins to do these things in our lives, we try hard to figure it all out.

Sometimes it feels like God puts too big of a task in front of us.

It can be intimidating and feel like a wild ride.

But God says He will equip us.

He gives us friends to support us, encourage us, and hold us accountable.

God will make beautiful music of our lives....

When we trust Him enough to get out of the boat...

And walk with Him.

"For by grace you have been saved through faith.  And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a results of works, so that no one may boast.  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."
- Ephesians 2:8-10

Monday, October 29, 2012

A Perfect Match

"Call me!  They've matched us!"

That was the text message from my husband that made my heart stop in its tracks while I was enjoying coffee with a friend on a Thursday night.  We finally got THE call.  And then for the first time, we saw her sweet face....

Of course we fell in love immediately (how could you not?! Just look at those kissable cheeks & longing eyes!) and sent back the required paperwork less than 24 hours later.

After three somewhat torturous years of dreaming, praying, wondering, crying, hoping, aching, and longing we now know.  Well, we know some things about Zoe- what she looks like, where she was abandoned, what orphanage she lives in and a brief medical history.  Oh, and in a recent update we learned that she sometimes steals toys from other babies :)

I realize now, it's never going to be enough for me.  I thought that when we started the process, I would feel better because at least I would know one day she would be in my arms.  Then I cried because the process was slowing down and taking longer and longer.  Then I thought I would feel better once we were matched because then I would be able to see her sweet face and know who this little girl is that has captured my heart.  But now I cry because every time Arella is upset, I worry about Zoe and wonder if anyone is holding her when she is upset or hurt or scared.  Now I keep telling myself that I will feel better once she is in my arms and I can hold her and protect her and love on her.  But I know I will cry even after I have her in my arms, because I will always wonder and pray for her family that couldn't keep her.

And so is the beauty and heartbreak that is adoption.  There is grief, hurt, loss and ashes of a life she will never know.  Yet there is also hope, excitement, love, joy and beauty in this forever family she has in us.  Adoption is such a tangible picture of what God has done for us.  He doesn't ask us to clean ourselves up, do the best we can to cover up our past and hope that He accepts us in the end.  He tells us to come to Him as we are.  He says He will clean us up and make us new.  He says He has already paid our debts, and all that is left is for us to accept this gift of His grace and join His family.

I am so very excited to go get my baby and bring her home, but I am also terrified of the upheaval and insanity that it will likely reign down on this house until we all adjust.  Having two girls just six months apart in age suddenly joining forces as toddlers is crazy, I know.  God seems to put a lot of "crazy" on my plate, but I know when I trust Him with the "crazy" He always turns it into something astonishing.

I'm working on trusting Him more and crying a little less as we wait a little longer.  The next step is our travel approval which could come any time in the next 3-8 weeks or so.  From there it should be about a month until we can jump on that plane to China!