Job 9: 18
"...he will not let me get my breath, but fills me with bitterness."
Job 7: 11
"Therefore I will not restrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.:
Job 7: 20b
"Why have you made me your mark?"
Job 6: 11-12
"What is my strength, that I should wait? And what is my end, that I should be patient? Is my strength the strength of stones, or is my flesh bronze?"
Job 5: 8-9
"As for me, I would seek God, and to God would I commit my cause, who does great things and unsearchable, marvelous things without number.
Job 5: 18
"For he wounds, but he binds up; he shatters, but his hands heal."
Job. I don't want to even begin to compare my life with his, or my troubles. That guy had it bad. God literally let Satan run rampant with all that was precious to him and make his life so miserable that Job says, "I loathe my life" at least three times that I counted while reading through the book today. He was a mess. He was hurting, and from what I gathered, his greatest heartbreak was not losing all he had, including all of his children, it was that the Lord and God he knew to be Sovereign let it happen. He could not make sense of it.
I was reading through the book of Job on my kindle on the way back from San Diego today. I highlighted so many passages that I might as well have just highlighted the whole book. I could have written it. It is so deeply and honestly raw. There are no cliche Christian encouragements or shallow pats on the proverbial shoulder. Job was hurting. He was confused. He questioned God and lamented at his situation. If you haven't read the book, I encourage you to do so. It's not that long. But if you have ever been heartbroken or deeply saddened, you will find comfort in someone else being way worse off than you, and inspired that he is somehow still praising God through it. Not in a fake, "All of this is God's will let me just roll over and smile" sort of way. In a "Lord, this sucks. My life is loathsome. I'm so hurt you would allow this. But I know I deserve worse, and I know you will create good from this" sort of way. (And the kicker is...He does. If you can trudge through the hard parts, there is a happy ending for all, though you'd never know it reading through chapters upon chapters of Job's 'woe is me, life hath left me to rot' perspective.)
We got word today that the sweet little baby girl we have been praying for and planning to adopt into our family has a specific and catastrophic gross brain abnormality. She was diagnosed a few days ago, and the diagnosis was confirmed today. She is not expected to live long after her birth. It could be moments, days, months...none of the possibilities are good enough in my heart. We are left, baffled, at yet another heart breaking scenario for our family. Why?
I don't want to pretend to make sense of any of this, because it is just so senseless. I am simply heartbroken for her and her mother. I'm so baffled. Emotionally I feel as if I have been smacked across the face in front of a crowd of people. I don't know what to do, or how to make the situation okay. I want my response to be graceful, yet I'm so hurt.
I feel like God never ceases to challenge me with situations I couldn't dream up if I tried. We prepared our hearts for the possibility of birth mom making a different plan. We prepared our family for the different scenarios of special needs and how that would impact us. We prepared to bring a baby home. We had a baby shower. My house is set up and ready to bring a baby home, like, tonight. If there was preparation to be had, we prepared it. This was totally out of left field, and we've had to completely turn to Him for our reaction and response. And despite my feelings of Job-ness, I am trusting that God will work it together for good. Only He could make anything of value out of this total and utter mess, but I know He can, and if it takes the rest of my life, I know He will.
This little pumpkin has such a hard little road ahead of her. We know there is always the possibility of God doing something totally God-like and allowing her to be born free of any abnormalities. But...we have been through enough of this kind of thing to know that it just doesn't happen like that most of the time. He is preparing us for the worst for a reason. Usually because the worst is about to happen.
I wanted a baby girl that was healthy and would be a physical part of our family forever. God, however, knew from the moment He created her that this would be how it panned out. That this birth mom would choose us, that we would learn of this news this late into the game, that she would have no one else. No one. As selfish as I am, I have come to realize that this whole situation just isn't about me and what I want. It is about a little baby girl that needs love for the little while that she is here. And Josh and I have made a decision that we will do what we can to love on her in the time that we have with her.
The adoption of this little one is complicated because of the situation. We just won't know anything until she is here. We still want to believe that God will grant us our desire to have a baby come home with us through adoption, but we are taking it one day at a time. We don't want to get ahead of ourselves and start thinking about going up on the waiting list again. We just need a little time.
What happens from here is just so dependent on what happens from here. This is not the end of our adoption journey, it is a major detour, for sure, but we know God will use it to grow our faith and bring us closer to Him and to each other. He already has.
Right now, we would like to ask everyone around us to be praying for this little one. She has a mother who is hurting very much, and I can relate to the feeling of knowing your baby won't live the full life you imagined. Please be in prayer for her. This baby girl has such a wonderful opportunity to impact so many lives, even though it is so different than what we ever imagined. Please pray that God will do awesome things through her short life.
We are totally resigning to God's will right now. Whatever He wants us to do, whatever role He wants us to play in this situation, we will do that. We'd like you to pray that He will make it very clear to us what He wants and that He will grant us the strength to do whatever He asks.
I honestly can't predict how things will play out. What I imagine happening is us being there for this little one as much as we are allowed to be, and supporting her until she leaves this world or blesses another family who is better equipped to take care of her. At this point birth mom wants to continue with an adoption plan, though we are wondering how her heart might change knowing her baby girl has only moments or days on this earth. She wants someone there to hold her and love her until she goes, and since right now that doesn't look like it will be her, we are wondering if it should be us. We will talk to the agency and see where we go from here.
Speaking of going from here...
Eventually we want to get back on the proverbial adoption horse, and ask that God bless us with a little one to bring home to Jake and Eisley. Eventually. I promise we'll get there. We knew this adoption faith walk would be long and hard, full of surprises and possibly heartaches. I knew that, and our family knew that. This is just par for the course. Stuff happens. We deal with it as best we know how, and we move forward.
This is something God wanted in our lives, and in your lives apparently, too. Do with it what you will. We are choosing to use this opportunity to love on this baby girl, name her, pray for her, advocate for her. To show her and her mother what it means to be a follower of Christ. To see "Kim" through her pregnancy and make sure she is not alone, and that this baby will not be alone. To be the an example of God's unconditional love to both of them. That's all we can do really. What can you do?
I feel like apologizing to everyone. We all were hoping so much for a more joyful outcome. I am trying to put away my feelings of selfishness and remember that there is a mommy hurting so much more than I am, that there is a baby girl who is at the brunt of all of this, who has such a hard little road ahead. Please be praying for her. Right now, I feel that our family and loved ones are responsible for interceding on her behalf. We are responsible for praying for her, and if you don't know what to pray for, pray God will use her life to make an impact for Him on this world! Honestly, she already has done that! What a special little girl, to impact so many who only a short time ago learned of her existence!
God has taken this sweet little baby girl who would have been born into this world practically alone and entrusted her with a family of people who are praying and loving on her. I don't know how long or in what capacity the Lord will allow us to be a part of her life, but we are a part of this chapter, and I will spend every moment that I think of her praising God for her creation and asking that He do something miraculous with it. Her existence was not an accident, and none of this is a surprise to God. Though we are shocked and dismayed by the outcome, I know God has been preparing our hearts for this for a very long time. My three pumpkins in heaven will greet her with open arms! That thought makes my heart so happy for her.
Once again, we are so thankful for the love and support of our friends and family. Sometimes I feel like it would be so much easier on everyone if they cut ties with us altogether. I feel so upset over the heartache we have caused among those around us. But the reality is, we are just being obedient to the Lord, and that comes with heartache sometimes. Welcome to life. I'm so sorry if I ever handle any of what the Lord asks of us with anything short of a humble heart. He has blessed our family more than words can even express. I am reminded of that every time I look into the eyes of my daughter or hear the belly laugh of my son. Who is more blessed than I am??? NO ONE!!!
The thought occurred to me today that there are so many people in this life who have been called to be Jobs. They are the ones people look at and say, "Wow. Sucks to be them. I'm so glad God doesn't treat me like that!" (Maybe those aren't our exact thoughts, maybe it's more on the side of, "Wow, God really trusts them with a lot. I can't imagine Him trusting me with all of that." But you get the idea). They are asked to handle more than the average human being thinks they are capable of handling, and yet they do it, so gracefully, with so much praise in their hearts for their Savior. Where does that come from? I can think of so many of those people in my life right now. I'm incredibly blessed to even be included in their story, counted as a friend, or asked to pray for them as they fight the Job-like fight. I'm honored to do so. But as trials persist and this road stretches out to be a lot longer and harder than we originally thought, I find myself relating more and more to Job and looking to those very Job-like people to inspire me and encourage me to be better at this.
Which can only mean one thing...I am one of those Jobs.
Dang it. When did that happen?
But. Jobs of the world, before you go running out of the house begging God not to burn down your last ox... listen. The upside to being a "Job" is that we get direct communication with our Savior. I'm not saying He doesn't listen just as intently to my friend Wanda who has never had so much as a hangnail in the trials department. I'm saying that we have more meaningful opportunities to have a special commune with Him when we are going through stuff like this. There is time set aside for you, for me, to lament. To cry. To ask Him why and fully expect a response, though we may not get one in the time frame we desire. Time for him to comfort us and help pull us up by the bootstraps. It's a gift. Take advantage of it. You will come out so much wiser and at peace with all that's gone down. I have never come out of a serious prayer and Scripture reading time where I have cried out to God and asked Him to show me the purpose in it all more upset with Him than when I entered. He always finds a way to calm me down and bring some light into the situation.
To our loved ones, we love you. Thank you for standing by us through another storm. Thank you for the encouragement, verses, hugs, and love you have sent our way. Stand back and watch our God make something beautiful from these ashes. I am fully confident He will.
Job 11: 14b "Let not injustice dwell in your tents. Surely then you will lift up your face without blemish. You will be secure and will not fear. You will forget your misery. You will remember it as waters who have passed away.And your life will be brighter than the noonday. Its darkness will be like the morning."