Stepping out in faith...over the past 5 or 6 years I have been learning how to step out beyond...beyond my fears, beyond my abilities, beyond what I could think or imagine. It is definitely one reason God has me in the church I am in, sharing my spiritual journey with these particular people. We are stepping out together!
Stepping out in obedience to God takes on many forms and my most recent, of course, is adopting four children from Nicaragua. And I've notice a pattern... Mornings are the challenge. This is the time of the day when I experience the most fear, the most sadness, the most panic.
In the early days of deciding to adopt our sweet four, I would awaken anywhere between 4-6 a.m. and just be in a state of fear and panic! "Could I do this? Was I hearing God? Did I want to do this? Could we afford it?" On and on it would go! But, as I fully woke up and got out my Bible and poured it out to the Lord, His peace would fill me. Every.Time. I felt kind of like Drew Barrymore in "50 First Dates." Every morning my call from God needed to be renewed because I initially forgot and He had to remind me. Then, for the rest of the day, I was good to go!
I believe this is because when I first wake up, I am being driven by my own flesh and not by the Spirit.
"Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” ~Matthew 26:41
These days, I don't need convincing that I am on the right path. It's been confirmed enough times and I have thoroughly fallen in love with my younger 4 children! Each story, each picture, each skype, and each phone call causes a near explosion in my heart!!
Now my mornings have a different challenge. This is when I have a good cry...because they are in Nicaragua and I am in the United States, because my husband is there and I am not, because he is seeing so many of their "firsts" and I am not, because every day they ask me "Mama, when are you coming??" I pray they know how BADLY I wish I was there.
Every morning I wake up feeling a little sorry for myself. Every morning it doesn't seem right or fair... I wake up selfish and "in the flesh". I think, "Why am I stuck here?" Then I open my Bible and pour myself out to God and place my heart and my desires back under my God's loving control. And God is faithful to fill me with grace and peace...and remind me that HE is enough and my greatest prize!
great is your faithfulness." ~Lamentations 3:22-23
It is then that I can face another day and live it with joy. I can fully trust that God knows best and that He has good reasons why my husband needed to go first, why the kids needed to bond to him first, why they had to wait for me and I for them. It can be enough that they are in a home with their Papa and being loved and knowing they belong. They have the joy of "happy firsts" and I am happy for them and for my husband. I can remember that it's not about me...it never was and it never will be and it was never supposed to be. I remember that this is most about obeying God and that I want to obey Him more than anything else. And I trust that our time together as a family is coming. I give my longing to God and I choose to walk another day and the day after as a sheep following her Shepherd.