Saturday, December 29, 2012
So much, if not all, of the journey to adopt my youngest four children have been about boldly asking God to fulfill a dream I believed came from Him but didn't make a whole lot of sense on paper. I believed it was "safe" to ask because, as Amy Carmichael puts it:
"It is a safe thing to trust Him to fulfill the desires which He creates."
Or even better:
"Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart." ~Psalm 37:4
In my family, God prodded me first and I had to believe that He would speak to the rest of my family as I waited not so patiently. During that period I convinced them to let me read aloud to them "Kisses from Katie" by Katie Davis and prodded them to watch "A Home for the Holidays" on television about adoption and watch adoption videos on YouTube and they also had to put up with me doing things like setting an extra place at the supper table!
The desire was so strong in me I could barely contain myself. To focus my mind, I did my chores of the day while listening to sermons like David Platt's series on "Radical" and multiple Francis Chan sermons. I had to keep my mind occupied or I would go crazy!
I've prayed over multiple passages in the Bible concerning the orphan and the needy and the oppressed. They are each highlighted in orange. I have asked God about these passages and asked Him to help me to become part of His plan for those who needed a family. I begged Him to "set the lonely" in MY family! And He was so faithful and He brought us here and He is bringing us through.
We did not "sail through". It's easily been the hardest thing we have ever done. It's been like jumping off a cliff really, not knowing for sure if we were "believing right" that there was a safety net that would catch us before we hit the rocks at the bottom!
Through it, I have learned to ask for bold things from God. Luke 11 tells the story of a man banging on the door of his friend for bread because a different friend stopped at his house and this man had nothing to feed him. But the man who owns the house is in bed and doesn't want to get up. Finally he gets up and gives his friend the bread "because of the man's boldness." I am becoming that one banging on God's door begging for bread.
It used to be scary to ask for bold things. What if God says "no"? What if I got it wrong? What if I just don't hear from God or don't think He's talking? What does that do to my faith?
During the height of this "bold asking" (when we were praying for an early sentence from the judge), I was just really struggling with the "ins and outs" of it all.
And a friend shared with me Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego (Daniel 3). Ready to be thrown in a fiery furnace for their faith, their statement before entering was:
"If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and He will rescue us from your hand, O king. But even if He does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up." ~Daniel 3:17-18
This really cemented in my mind that when your faith is secure in Christ, you can ask Him to let you do bold things in His name. You can ask because your trust is SO strong in Him, that you are not afraid to hear "no." You are not afraid because at the end of the day, even when it is so hard, you want His plan over your own. You can say, "I know you are able, God, but even if You do not do "this"...I will continue to trust You because You are good and all that You do is good."
"For the Lord is good and His love endures forever, His faithfulness continues through all generations." ~Psalm 100:5
"For God will either assuage the fury of the fire or give us the strength to endure it." ~Latimer, written on his prison wall before he was burned at the stake.