Tag Archives: hope

The Sweetest Christmas Story —part 3

With a burst of excitement the long waited adoption of Jenny took off.

Tickets were bought. Suitcases packed and before I knew it I was flying to Moscow.

Looking back today many years later I marvel at how smoothly it all came together.

But as always

when it’s right…it’s right.

It was difficult to sleep on the long flight to Moscow.

Memories of my first adoption came to mind

but no matter how you get a child

each time is different- each experience is laced with the sacred fingerprints of God.

After exiting the uneventful flight I connected with my Russian facilitator,

grabbed my luggage and got in his car.

Today I smile remembering the scene –

a cold late afternoon in December riding along on my way to Kostroma

talking as if we’d known each other for years.

The hours passed quickly as I watched the snow falling.

Would we make it all the way to the orphanage?

“Da”, he nodded. Nothing would keep us from making it to the orphanage.

But late in the night the mounting snow caused me increasing concern.

I’ll never forget the moments when we stopped at a small, rustic restaurant

that seemed in the middle of nowhere.

It was almost  like walking into a children’s fairytale.

Deep snow abounded outside

but inside there was music and laughter and colored lights of Christmas.

A warm fire was blazing in the fireplace and we sat and ordered a simple meal.

At that moment

although halfway around the world from all things familiar

I was at home.

The peace that God gave was real and it was as if He graced me with an evening of wonder.

But all too quickly we headed out into the wintry scene and continued the drive to Kostroma.

Our conversation slowed as we both tried to see through the snow.

I marveled that he managed to follow the narrow two lane road.

In the early hours of morning we drove into Kostroma .

I found my way to a hotel room and freshened up

as I prepared to meet my soon to be adopted little girl.

Then suddenly I found myself sitting in a big room at the orphanage.

Alone. Waiting. Waiting some more.

Then  I heard a sound and turned my head as the door opened.

There stood the tiniest little girl.

I caught my breath

and looked up into the face of my facilitator.

“She’s so small.”

And she was.

Born very premature weighing 1 ½ pounds she was a survivor now at two.

I held out my arms and scooped her into them.

We often speak of love at first sight

and this was my second time when that was my experience.

A mother knows her child. There is no other explanation for it.

Suddenly my heart that had waited so very long for this little one

was overflowing with joy.

But there would be more hurdles to cross before I could bring her home.

And I will tell you about the importance of one orange.

 

In The Waiting Room

It’s been one of those times lately

when I’m aware that I’m on hold in the waiting room of life.

I’ve prayed and prayed and prayed

and there seems to be no answer.

Day after day. Night after night. No seeming change.

“God is faithful,” I say again. And down deep in my heart I know that it is true.

But this narrow waiting room is tough.

It traps me.

I can’t go forward – can’t make a decision-

until I know.

Alone I remind myself of the truth –

God’s silence is how it feels, it is not how it is.

No, He is here. He is with me and He knows.

But I struggle humanly wanting to cut short the process and fast forward life.

When stuck in the desert I must remember the Truth.

He is here.  He is with me. He is with you. Always.

Years ago I struggled with a decision

One that would change the rest of my life.

I longed for God’s Will.

I hungered for Him to just tell me.

But day after day there was only silence

and night after night the same.

As frequently happens on planet earth

Time was running out.

I needed to make a decision.

Would I adopt a second child

or would I continue on to get my PhD in Family Studies?

It was easier to just go ahead with the academic work.

I had already been accepted into the doctoral program.

But

there was this nagging uncertainty and lack of peace.

A little girl needed me.  I thought I sensed that crazy thought.

I know it was ridiculous.

Why look at my age –  and I had long since given away all my little baby girl things.

But the noise within me and without grew with the passing of time.

God, where are you? I cried.

Quite suddenly I decided to get away for a few days –

to get away from work and daily responsibilities and all the normal routines.

I took my young daughter out of school

and started driving to the beach.

Mile after mile I drove all the way pondering the life changing choice before me.

Day after day I walked the beach in the early morning hours.

Day after day.

One step on the sand at a time.

Listening. Asking but mostly being still. Sea air blowing my hair moments.

I saw no visions,

heard no voices,

no fireworks or writing in the sky.

Simply peace.

And that growing desire to do what He wanted me to do.

Yes, Lord, I cried out into the silence while the tears trickled down my face.

Yes, Lord. I say yes.

With that it was as if everything was set into motion.

Another adoption was begun

that eventually ended in my going back to Russia.

I walked out of the waiting room and into the wild, crazy ride of an international adoption.

I faced challenges and was stretched in many ways

But I knew that He with me.

During those early morning walks on the beach I had sensed His Peace,

and that stayed with me

reminding me that when He calls me to do something much bigger than I

He is with me. I do not need to be afraid.

Silence never means you are alone. That is how it feels.

But that same silence only says He is very present

and at the right time

He will reveal the next step

Are you in the waiting room right now?

Do you feel the pressure of needing to know?

Rest in Him. He satisfies the need of every trusting heart.

May our waiting room experiences be transformed into worship.

And with that we both can receive His peace.

 

 

 

Sleeping Dolls, Silent Dreams

Twenty six years ago these words were penned. My heart overflowed with longing and pain.

May these words somehow comfort the heart of some woman today

who, too, longs and waits. He knows your heart. He cares.mother's day sleeping dolls, silent tears

 

A few months ago, I was cleaning in the attic

and came upon a big, old box tightly sealed, covered with dust, unmarked.

Wondering what was in it, I ran for the scissors and cut the tape.

As I opened the lid and saw what was inside

my heart twisted in sudden pain.

There lay my beloved dolls, my childhood playmates, sleeping.

Tenderly I lifted the large baby dolls- the one with soft brown curls and deep blue eyes.

I gently held her in my arms.

Her eyes were closed –

that peaceful smile still on her face.

As I held her, smoothing the little gingham dress and touching the knitted booties

My mind drifted back to days of long ago.

I had always loved playing with dolls.

And while I dressed them, fed them, and rocked them,

I dreamed about the day when I would hold my very own child.

My own flesh.

I wanted a house full of children, laughter and giggles.

But

the years have come and gone – and today

Those dreams seem further from reality than ever before.

It hurts.

The longing is so deep.

As I rose to lay my sleeping doll back in the box,

Tears trickled silently down my cheeks.

“Oh Father, You know how deeply I long;

How many times I’ve asked, Father. You know that I’m getting older.

Someday it will be too late.

“Daughter of Mine,” I heard Him whisper,

“do you really trust Me with all your dearest dreams,

with all your deepest longings?

My plans for you are the best. Just wait. You’ll see.

Now….feed My sheep.”

I closed the lid to my silent dreams and arose to serve my Lord—

grateful that He knows what is best.