God has been whispering a sweet, repetitive melody in my hear for a few months, “Please trust me. I promise I am making all things new. And I am most faithful.”
Just a year ago I found myself fed up with the way this world appeared to be going and doubting Anyone was moving in the midst of it. You see, being personally and professionally tied to adoption is not daily balloons and butterflies and unicorns. No, instead it is the reminder that this world is dreadfully broken. Don’t get confused…adoption is beautiful and gives you lots of warm fuzzies, but it is rooted in heartbreak, pain and loss. It is sorrow and emptiness for dads and moms and family and friends…and definitely sorrow for the little ones it’s all about.
There are few days that go by that I don’t think of the pain and confusion that our child is likely experiencing…right now. They have probably said goodbye (or not even had the chance) to their first Mommy and Daddy. It’s possible they’ve been separated from siblings, grandparents, aunts, neighbors and friends. Can you imagine being removed from all you know…and then being placed in a brand new “home” with new people you’ve never met? This is going to happen to our child at least twice in their short life. How would you cope and ever feel normal again?
Pain and brokenness is certainly not unique to adoptive families and their connected birth families. It is a world pandemic. And as we see stories of suffering on our TV and computer screens, we feel more connected, more desperate. It’s enough to make me want to hide under the covers and just wait for it all to end. But that is not what this life is for. We are not here just biding our time. Because we have a God who is the ultimate Restorer of all brokenness. And He is not waiting around for the world to go to the crapper. He’s doing it now.
One of our dearest friends and biggest cheerleaders in this adoption journey, Lynnea, sent me this encouragement earlier in the week. It is exactly what I needed and portrays God’s restoration and redemption perfectly:
“Hey friend. Just was reading Common Prayer this morning and was praying for you and Jeremy and your little person. The verse is Joel 2:21-27 and I think it describes perfectly what God can do in the life of your child and your family. I believe this experience will lead you to a new level of trust, but I also believe that because of your family God will restore the years the locust has eaten in your child’s life and shame will never be a part of their story again. Love you and praying for you on this journey.”
Joel 2:21-27 says:
“Do not fear, O land, rejoice and be glad,
For the Lord has done great things.
Do not fear, beasts of the field,
For the pastures of the wilderness have turned green,
For the tree has borne its fruit,
The fig tree and the vine have yielded in full.
So rejoice, O sons of Zion,
And be glad in the Lord your God;
For He has given you the early rain for your vindication.
And He has poured down for you the rain,
The early and latter rain as before.
The threshing floors will be full of grain,
And the vats will overflow with the new wine and oil.
Then I will make up to you for the years
That the swarming locust has eaten,
The creeping locust, the stripping locust and the gnawing locust,
My great army which I sent among you.
You will have plenty to eat and be satisfied
And praise the name of the Lord your God,
Who has dealt wondrously with you;
Then My people will never be put to shame.
Thus you will know that I am in the midst of Israel,
And that I am the Lord your God,
And there is no other;
And My people will never be put to shame.”
You see, just like God restored Israel to wholeness and abundance after wandering a very broken path of destruction, He desires to bring wholeness to each element of brokenness in our world. I know that His great plan for our child is to redeem the pain they are experiencing even now and the pain that is to come. God has His hands deep in the dirt of this world because He knows the beauty He will cause to spring up. He is doing it every day. Don’t miss it. Whatever you are doing with your life, be sure it is in some way joining God’s work in restoring His created world to its original design.
“You are not oiling the wheels of a machine that’s about to roll off a cliff. You are not restoring a great painting that’s shortly going to be thrown on the fire. You are not planting roses in a garden that’s about to be dug up for a building site. You are– strange though it may seem, almost as hard to believe as the resurrection itself– accomplishing something that will become in due course part of God’s new world. Every act of love, gratitude, and kindness; every work of art or music inspired by the love of God and delight in the beauty of His creation; every minute spent teaching a severely handicapped child to read or to walk; every act of care and nurture of comfort and support, for one’s fellow man beings and for that matter one’s fellow nonhuman creatures; and of course every prayer, all Spirit-led teaching, every deed that spreads he gospel, builds up the church, embraces and embodies holiness rather than corruption, and makes the name of Jesus honored in the world– all of this will find its way, through the resurrecting power of God, into the new creation that God will one day make.” –N.T. Wright, Surprised by Hope