A gift

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Around Thanksgiving of last year, after considering and beginning the process of the placement of a 2 year old boy, we made the difficult decision to stop the placement and temporarily put on hold our adoption process. This began a difficult time for me of deconstructing all of my previous ideas about who I thought God was, who I thought I was, and what grace really means in my life.

One of the most difficult things for me since that time has been knowing that I had no right to any more information about where little S was placed and how he was doing. We had made our decision and one of the consequences of that decision was not knowing the rest of the story for little S. This was an almost daily battle for me. I used to be a foster care and adoption case manager, I know first hand what happens to children when they begin bouncing around the system. I struggled constantly against guilt at feeling like I had abandoned little S. I had to constantly pray that God would give me peace.

A few weeks ago we were scheduled to have our quarterly meeting with our case manager. Before she came I prayed a lot because I knew the temptation to ask her about little S would be very strong. I didn’t want to ask because I didn’t want to be selfishly trying to ease my own guilt. I had to trust that we made the best decision we could at that time and I had to trust God for the outcome, even if I never knew what the outcome was.

As we were talking our case manager volunteered information about little S. Everything she said indicated that he is in a home where he is loved and thriving. Other details confirm some other hesitations we had about the placement and that the home he is in now is the right place for him to be right now.

This information was a complete gift to me. I did not deserve it, or even have the right to it. But I see it as a loving gift from God, showing me that I can let go of my guilt and continue to trust Him with our future. It showed me that sometimes it is okay to “listen to my heart” and make a decision based on a feeling, or emotion. That maybe God, through the Holy Spirit, even uses our feelings and emotions to guide us. The gift of this information has freed me live more joyfully and confidently, one day at a time. I don’t know what the future holds. Our hearts continue to be burdened for children in difficult circumstances. I continue to feel passionately about adoption. Maybe we will adopt kids in the future. Maybe God will use us in others ways. I don’t have the answers and that is okay. There is joy in knowing that we are doing our best to follow God’s leading today and we can trust Him to work out the details of tomorrow, next month, and years to come.

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