10 Things I Am Thankful For
1. Sunshine, because it never fails to refresh me when I’m having a rough day – kind of like Plants Vs. Zombies, the sunflowers have a refreshing/healing property…pretty sure that’s why God gave us things called “sun breaks” – and in our family we need those about now.
2. The resiliency and bounce-back-ability (is there a real-live word for that?) of my children. To withstand the trials and yet be blessed with the grace to thank God for His blessings in the next breath.
3. A RockStar of a husband, who has the patience to speak sense into me gently when my irrational self goes into The Incredible Hulk-mode.
4. Green things that are actually growing and surviving in pots on the back deck – giving me a picture of hope and renewal daily – and a reminder that even when something looks dead and dying, has no green sprouts and no signs of life, a little love and tender care and mostly patience (and sunshine and water, but that’s a given to most!) – there is a teeny seed of life embedded in every trial, in every dried out crusty heart, that can be revived. There is hope.
5. Caffeine. That’s all I have to say about that.
6. The Pediatric wing in Legacy Salmon Creek’s Emergency Room – complete with Pediatric ER docs, shelves of kids’ movies and popsicles. I heart you.
7. Supportive, encouraging friendships that surround us each and every day. Friends that ask questions and stick around for the answers, and friends that know when to NOT ask questions, but still stick around just because.
8. Our Haiti Family Coordinator at America World Adoption, who goes above and beyond the expectations and parameters of her job on paper to help care for and feed her Haiti Adoptive Families hearts and lives. With regular updates and words of encouragement, even if there is no news, the consistent communication helps the wait pass immeasurably faster.
9. The myriad of orphanage staff and visiting volunteers who hold my child in my absence, play games with him, feed him, sing to him, help educate him, and teach him about Jesus.
10. That I only committed to 10 things, because I have not enough focused brain capacity at the moment to try to come up with a logical 10th thing. OH! Our 11-year old comes home from Camp tomorrow…can’t wait to have him home safe and hear all about his wildly-fun weekend!
I felt I needed to be thankful up front today – today is a much “better” day than the past 7, but it is one of feeling like I’m in recovery! 🙂 The past seven days or so has been incredibly draining, feeling like we have endured one crisis or stressful situation after another, with no moments of break, breath, or relief. I actually found myself telling God, “Lord? I am almost at my breaking point here and I don’t think I can do this much longer! However, You could make it all up to me by giving us a Referral!”
The waiting is now getting to the point where it is no longer an excruciating daily wait, while it is a constant feeling of “something’s missing” – the waiting has slowly become just a part of our lives, something we do every moment of every day, the anxiety of the wait has dulled, as if we have become partially immune to it’s desperately clawing fingers.
It’s weeks like this one, though, that remind me of the story of Job. If you’re familiar with the Bible, you are probably familiar with the story – but the part that continues to be brought to mind again and again for me is Job 1, where Job is experiencing one absolute crisis after another, not a moment’s break between – he literally lost everything – wife, children, servants, possessions, estate – everything. But instead of asking God “why” or blaming Him for everything that has gone wrong, he says “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.”
The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away – I feel that God’s track record with us has been that this give/take is a constant cycle. At times He gives first, and then takes away, but at other times He takes, and then gives…but in either time, I have to remember that He is a good God, He loves us and desires the best for us – even if we cannot see at the moment into the intricacies of His purpose and plan. I am trying to be thankful when it is difficult, and remember that even though it may feel like all He is doing is “taking” and draining us – I know that He is a faithful God, and He will give again. He will renew and refresh our hearts, He will bring blessing, and continues to bring blessings even amidst the pain.
This week among the care for our own sick kids and ER visit for injured sidewalk-kisser, :), we grieve the loss of a beautiful woman, a friend and wife of one of Kris’ lifelong friends – She was quick to laugh, quick to love on our kids, and found joy and humor at every turn possible. We celebrate that her passing from this life led her directly into the arms of Jesus, who has waited patiently for years for her to come Home. We rejoice that she is in the arms of her Heavenly Father, and the pain and suffering of her life here on earth is eradicated completely.
Prayers for our family and those around us would be much appreciated as we “circle the drain” of draining circumstances and the ins and outs of life as we know it right now – it doesn’t feel like very much fun – although I know that God will use all of this to strengthen and sharpen our hearts and the lives of those who surround us.
We have heard yet another rumbling rumor that IBESR referrals will be released mid-to-end of July, and we are praying fervently that this will happen for other families – even if our family does not receive one this month! While at times we choose to pray for our own family to be complete, we know there are so many other families who have been waiting in heart-aching limbo for their own Haitian babies and children to come home – much longer than we have!
Join us in praying for relief, the refreshing of hearts, the renewing of souls, and the RELEASE of the children waiting for families!