As I think back over the last year, the memories fill my heart and seem too numerous to pin down onto paper. But, if I had to choose only one idea, the one feeling that covers all others and runs through the last year of our life, it would have to be love.
God’s love for us is so powerful, so vast that we will never be able to understand it.
Could we with ink the ocean fill,
And were the skies of parchment made,
Were every stalk on earth a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade,
To write the love of God above,
Would drain the ocean dry.
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Though stretched from sky to sky.
Oh, how I have felt His love for me this year.
I have felt Him carry me.
I have felt Him uphold me.
I have felt Him strengthen me.
I have felt Him fill my heart and my home with a peace that would have otherwise been unobtainable.
When a woman gives birth she labors in agony, she experiences great pain, she screams and cries and prays. And then she finally holds that precious newborn in her arms. No, the pain is not forgotten, but it is inconsequential. The pain births something beautiful, and it is worth it.
It is worth it.
The pain and the tears, the struggles and the growth of the last year – it is all worth it. Because through that pain, we birthed a beautiful family.
The road is not now easy, nor will it ever be.
But it is worth it.
The pain is not over, the wounds are not completely healed.
But it is worth it.
As I look into the precious faces of my 6 children, I know that we are all better people because of the journey we have been on together.
Who am I, that I was entrusted this great treasure?
Who am I, that I was given this great joy?
I am a child of God and He loves me. He wanted to bless me through my surrender to Him. He gave abundantly more than I could have asked for, and I am grateful.
Yes, I am frequently tired and worn. Yes, I am sometimes impatient and unkind. Yes, I am unworthy.
But He loves me anyway.
He doesn’t need me to be perfect. He only needs me to be willing.
Recently we piled all 8 of us into the blankets and pillows of our bed and watched a Christmas movie. Leah snuggled her way under my arm, lay her head against my chest and said, “Mom, I feel like there is room in your heart for me now. I think I can fit inside your heart.”
There is a lot of truth in that.
No matter how much I wish it were true, when my children first entered our family, there was not enough room in my heart. Oh, there was SOME room. I tried valiantly to make MORE room. But, too much of my heart was filled with things like selfishness and pride and anger. Adoption is a refining fire that can burn away so much sin and show you how much you need Jesus. Adoption is a beautiful mess that changes every single person involved.
So many times people have said things to me like…
Your children are so lucky to have you.
You have changed their lives!
And I would say in response….
I am so lucky to have them.
They have changed my life.
Adoption is the tool God used to build our family to look more like His kingdom.
It is this great irony, adoption is. Our family is far from perfect, we have rough edges and broken pieces, every one of us. But when I look at our family, I feel this sense of completeness.
This is how my family was designed by the One who knows best.
The Lord has done great things for us. And we are filled with joy. Psalm 126:3