We are in such a season as a family, with all the ups and downs, joys and terrors that entails.
We are parenting four amazing teenagers and four amazing pre-teens. Yes, this is a challenging stage of life, for our children and ourselves - and complicated by our long and unpredictable wait for our dear little ones. We honestly feel like sometimes we don't know from moment to moment what is going to be happening in the next month.
God has surely provided. He continues to provide, even as people doubt. We see it daily with our own eyes. How do you explain it? God is in control. Why we are having to deal with the IRS this long when that is one of the ways we envisioned finishing up paying for this adoption, is a question we cannot answer. And yet we see God providing for each need of this adoption. We are so blessed by our church family - who are truly embracing what it means to be family - and family to these little ones. I had ended an email to someone by saying "a mama will do anything for her babies, even her babies she hasn't met yet". And the response was "yes, these are our babies too! We are the hands and feet and God has called us to the least of these, to orphans and widows." She told me that we put into action what she read.
I don't know about that, and I have a hard time when someone tries to make us out to be saints.
We aren't. We are an ordinary family, with some extraordinary things going on. But it is all as it should be. God orchestrates. I have no explanation for why he has called us. Why we are on this journey. We never planned it.
But I am so eternally grateful.
I rejoiced in making tacos with my family tonight, a huge amount. I rejoiced in making yet another batch of apple related canning things to use the bounty of what we have. I rejoiced in seeing teens and preteens see bits of life coming together. Everyone has their own road, and each one of our children does. We try to very deliberately plan for each of our kids, to give them the opportunities they need in life to be who God designed them to be. I rejoiced in my teens helping volunteering for a community event.
Life isn't easy. People in their stress strike out and sometimes you happen to be in their way as they do. They are dealing with their own hurts and concerns. It hurts.
But I know that God has a plan. I know that at the moment, I see some of it. There are days where we see through the shadows, and there are days we see through the sunshine. Lately it seems our life fluctuates from moment to moment.
We are waiting on two priceless little girls. I have children at home who are very nervous about the unknown of when we will be gone, what our timeline might be for our little girls coming home. I have two kids (like me) who like to plan it out moment by moment. But that is not where we are living right now. I could stress about that, or I could rest in what I see, which is that we are nearing the light at the end of the tunnel. I know that I may not have all our fees in hand as of yet, but that they are coming. I wish I knew the exact date - that would really be wonderful. But I have seen that God is never late. Somehow often not early, but never late. When Reece's Rainbow joined with us, we so thought that they would be helping a lot more than they have been able to, but God has his own plan for that. There are so many kids in need. I hope and pray they all find homes. My job is to get mine home. I took my two youngest daughters shopping today for the material they wanted to make blankies for their baby sisters. I know what they will be doing yet this next week. It was an amazing thing to see their hearts as they chose patterns for little ones they haven't met yet.
I know that folks realistically question how this will get done. I get it. We have several different options at this point. Several. It will get done. With or without help. We are so close. I never expected to be this close at this date (well, a while back I did, but there have been so many delays).
I look forward to very quietly saying "I told you so" to a few people. I have seen it five times. I would be a fool if I didn't say I know it is coming.
Our next expenses: $3500 to $4000 for our court trip
$8800 for our final adoption agency fees
$6000 (or maybe a bit less) for our final trip when we bring the girls home.
That includes everything - embassy fees of about $800, $400 for our in country stay, $400 or more for donations to nannies and care centers,
I know that I will be a stay at home mom once this is done, but in the meantime, I have been blessed to be able to work. And now I am able to pick up long days when my husband is home and not be gone when he isn't. And to make the same amount or more. God is so good. I know also how I will add to our income once the little ones are home. I love to see what we have put away by canning, harvesting and all that. I have reached a point where I really don't feel the need to explain to anyone anymore. I know in my own head. I know where we are at. I know our plans.
Adoption is expensive. Life is expensive. And it is priceless. Each one of our children is priceless. God could care less. It is just paper to Him. I agree. I have seen it all come. Yes, we welcome anyone who wants to join with us. We would be foolish if we didn't. But we do have a plan, one way or the other. Folks don't seem to think we do at times, but sometimes we just don't plan to share. It is personal.
God is all about loving people. God is all about each one of us. God loves us as we are, and will meet us where we are. Please go meet Him. Look at the people around you. God loves them. He is in them, He created them. What would He have you do?
"For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans for hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11