You see, this is not the life I would have chosen for myself. Thirty is staring me in the face and motherhood is not yet in sight. There is hope on the horizon, yes, but nothing certain. I thought that by now, we would be adopting our first child to add to the two already in our home. But that is not the case. We only have one child. And she has four legs.
So this is not the story I wrote for myself when I was younger. My story was not nearly this dramatic. It's the story God wrote for me before the dawn of time. He knew all of these things would happen. He knew the moments that would fill us with joy and anticipation. He knew the moments that would threaten to drown us in sorrow and hardship. He knew the days that I would rage in anger at the apparent unfairness of it all and even at Him. He knew the moments when I would be so totally and completely overwhelmed with love for my little Ethiopians that I would cry just thinking about them.
He knew all of those things, and He is using them to write this incredible story. A story that I cannot believe is mine. He is revealing to me the depth of His own love for His children and just a tiny glimpse of the hardship and sacrifice He endured to redeem us unto Himself. He is showing me that He can strengthen a woman, this woman, to withstand the most difficult and heart wrenching of tests and that He can carry her through those tests. He is showing me that I cannot be taken away from Him, no matter how hard the enemy tries and no matter how much I want to give up and give in. He is showing me that the love between a man and his bride can be the deepest, most profound example of Christ's love for the church and that that is exactly what it should be. He is showing me that the greatest thing we have on earth to advance the Kingdom of God is love. He is showing me that a mother's love for her children will cause her to willingly endure all kinds of hardships, impossibilities, disappointments, ridicule, loneliness, desperation and heartache and that she will keep coming back for more because her children are WORTH it. And He is showing me that HE feels the same way about US.
God has used this incredible thing called adoption to open my eyes, maybe just a little bit, to the startling reality of His love for us. His children. The children He adopted through the redemptive blood of Jesus Christ. The children He fought for and suffered for.
So when I say that my story is His story, I don't mean that I am like God. I'm not. Trust me. I mean that He is using the story He is writing in my life to reveal His character to me. And He is doing in the most radical of ways. This is not the path I would have chosen, but God has my attention. And I am ready to see what's next.
Maybe God is doing something awesome and redemptive in your life, too. Maybe it is NOT what you thought it would be. Hang in there, dear friend. He is working. He is writing a story in your life that is actually His story. Let him.
Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God!