It's been quiet on this blog for a reason. I have written this post many times in my head but, each time I couldn't articulate it quite right. I think I am finally at a place to get my thoughts and down really, I just want to look back on this journey and remember each step: both the good and the not so great.
I love the holidays. Christmas has always been my all time favorite time of year. But, this year it's been hard. It is a strange feeling having your child half way around the world during a time where family means everything. This year we had to talk about whether to hang 4 or 5 stockings. If Santa would bring Olivia presents or if we would just go on as a family of 4 in anticipation that next year would be so sweet. We had to choose not to send Christmas cards this year. It didn't feel right sending a family picture when a member is missing. These are all thoughts I never thought I would have until this process began. I don't think anyone but, an adoptive parent could understand these feelings. They are hard but, they are real and they are just part of the process. I want to feel them because as I do, my love for Olivia grows that much stronger.
To top off these emotions, we heard from one of our agency representatives in the early part of December that she does not expect us to travel until the end of February. Chinese New Year is Feb 8th this year and no adoptions will take place for 2 weeks after the New Year. We had our hearts set and our children prepared that we would travel in January. I spent the following weekend an emotional mess and in a puddle of tears. At the advice of another adoptive mommy friend I contacted our agency and stated that we would like to make it to China in January if at all possible. I was then contacted by our usual representative who assured me that they would do anything to get us to our child as soon as possible. She knows, and I know that China is in control of how fast our paper work moves. But, untimately God is the navigator of this journey and here is where he stepped in.
Our pastor decided to spend the month of December preaching on the gifts of Christmas. His first two sermons were about Hope and Peace. The Hope sermon occured on the weekend I spoke of before where I hit my "adoption wall". David preached that without Hope we have nothing. We must trust God and have Hope that his plan for us is greater than any road we could pave. We left that sermon and Brad asked me if I had thanked David for preaching to me that day? Ha.
The next week, I was feeling better but, still not myself. To top off the emotions regarding the holidays and the adoption, the Sandy Hook Elementary tragedy had just taken place. This week David preached on Peace. Peace David instructed is the opposite of anxiety. During worship I was able to cast all of my anxieties regarding travel dates and the who remaining portion of this adoption on HIM. Why waste my time being anxious and worried when I know He is in control? He is the same God who has orchestrated every step of this adoption process more beautifully than I could have ever imagined. He is the same God who hand picked our beautiful children just for us.
So now I rest in the beauty of the holidays and can honestly say that I am truly at Peace with God's plan whatever it may be. I am thankful for those broken moments I had because they not only allowed my love for Oliva to grown, they allowed my trust in the Lord to grow as well.
"And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful" Colossians 3:15
"Submit to God, and you will have peace; then things will go well for you" Job 22:21