When people ask me for an update on our adoption, I've found myself saying, "Every day is a new obstacle." And it's true. Let me say this as an *aside*. I want to paint as true a picture of our adoption as possible. Hopefully this does not come off as negative. I want to show it in as true a form as I can. Romanticizing it does not help others to count the cost which is very healthy thing to do before embarking on a journey. The obstacles are real and they are big. But what I hope will shine brighter in my story still unfolding is that God is always bigger still! GOD makes the obstacles a beautiful experience. If my family could do this on their own, it would not be a faith builder at all. Seeing God do it? How much greater is that! And it's amazing and beautiful...
My husband (in Nicaragua now) and I (in the U.S.) have a nightly talk. We talk over our day, we talk of what needs to happen, we seek to encourage one another (both living in the land of "hard" but each having a different "hard"). On Monday I was discouraged and Robin was giving me encouragement and reminding me that God had called us and He would bring us through the current obstacles (and future ones). Robin encouraged me to keep walking, focusing on just putting one foot in front of the other. Last night it was my turn to encourage and remind him that God is working and that He knows the best way and we just have to trust.
"Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken." Ecclesiastes 4:12
Yesterday, two of our "no's" turned into "yes" and one "yes" turned into a "no", and another request is a "wait and see". Yes, we can translate documents in Nicaragua as long as we use a translator on the government's approved list (for a half or even third of the cost of doing them here). Yes, I can authenticate the translations I had done in Maine as one document ($60 instead of $1000, a pretty big "yes" by any standard!). No, my husband cannot have his finger prints done at the U.S. Embassy in Managua which means a round trip flight to Houston (down and back within the day is the goal). The "wait and see" concerns a letter from the gov't of Nica to use so that airlines will allow us to book one way flights into the country since we don't have a "return date." These examples just give you a taste of the "behind the scenes" of each day. (I know I haven't said anything about our 4 sweeties here. That's a whole 'nother post. I'll just add that *family* is being built day by day. Today I get to skype with them. *smile*)
I am doing a Bible Study on the book of Nehemiah by Kelly Minter with a friend. I am learning SO.MUCH. And I am only in chapter 5 of Neh!! Nehemiah was called by God to oversee the rebuilding of the wall around Jerusalem. Oh, what obstacles he faced!!! But he kept the work going. He dealt with obstacles as they arose through calling on God, remembering God's promises, and wise decisions. One by one, as they came up, he dealt with them and kept building.
God really called me to adopt through Isaiah 58:6-12 (I say "me", because my husband had his own journey to discovering God's will on this matter). There were other passages but this was the big one. Verse 12 says: "you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings." I asked God if I could be that "repairer" and "restorer." So you can only imagine what lessons I am learning through Nehemiah!
The biggest lesson? Just keep building, just keep building... The obstacles will come. Then it's on my face before God that I have to go. And I just keep building, keep walking, keep stepping forward. The favor I need is not from any man but from God!
"And because the gracious hand of my God was upon me, the king granted my requests." Nehemiah 2:8
Day by day we fight fear, remembering that God's perfect love casts out fear. We just keep walking though the big picture is bigger than we are and way bigger than our resources. We know our God, who is THE GOD Yahweh, is bigger still. We know the end goal but not how to get there. But we trust our Good Shepherd who always leads his sheep through every dark path. And like Nehemiah, we just keep building.