While struggling with the never ending paperwork, the bureacratic b.s., the waiting for the next milestone in the adoption journey, I find that I'm often looking for signs of encouragement in my day.
This month the encouragements have come in Lenten sermon messages.
The first sermon by Pastor Steve focused on the Isrealites- how they had to have faith in what they did during their exodus journey, especially since they would never see the result of their faith walk. The elder leaders would be dead and gone by the time the group got to the Promised Land; the elders were making choices and would be doing this for their children and the future generations.
I began to think about our adoption in this way- we are following God's lead by bringing home a child from another country, and we may not live to see her purpose played out. However, we are doing what we feel called to do, and even though we don't know what the plans are for this child, we do know our part in the big picture. Bringing her home to a family.
(On a side note, the fact that Pastor Steve can make the Isrealites as interesting as he does is a testament to his sermon-writing abilities)
The second sermond that struck a chord with me was the one called Stay the Course. Pastor Dachler likened the faith that Noah had in taking 120 years to build the Ark as the ultimate Patience Test. Can you imagine the peer pressure that he faced day in and day out, answering the questions and heckles of neighbors and friends about why he was building this huge boat in the middle of a desert? Tough gig.
People who are adopting face alot of that same peer pressure- people wanting to know why we are doing what we are doing. How we can justify the cost during tough times- isn't that expensive? Why China and not USA? Why at our age? Why adopt at all?
It's also hard to keep up the momentum of the search for your child. It's easy to get sidetracked or lose some of the enthuisiasm when it feels like nothing is happening for months. Life gets in the way. Suddenly all sorts of unplanned expenses surface, and that digs at your adoption fund. The paperwork is endless and exhausting at times. The process drains your checking account and your energy.
I wonder if Noah ever felt this way?
Adoption is definitely a faith walk. But whenever I begin to become discouraged, something comes along to remind me of our purpose. I like to think of them as little Post-It notes from God, kind of like the little notes I used to put in my kid's lunch boxes to encourage them.
Notes giving me the encouragement I need to know that our actions have a purpose, and to help us Stay the Course.