Someone once told me that God will provide for every step along His journey for us. Under one condition.
He only provides as we first take the step.
This idea reminds me of Peter when he desired to walk on the water with Jesus. First, Peter’s desire became action. Only then, Christ met him with the full ability. It would have been one thing for Peter to privately, sheepishly request water-walking lessons from Jesus. Maybe at a time when they were alone, when the guys couldn’t see him struggle in the waves. Maybe at a more appropriate time, maybe when the waves weren’t so high. But instead, Peter swung his leg over the edge and jumped out the boat, in front of those nearest and dearest to his heart. He cast himself and his reputation into the sea of surrender, straight into the arms of Jesus.
Of course, I can’t leave out a crucial part of this story: Peter’s faith did falter, and he sank in fear. But Christ’s hand was close, and His footing was sure. The point is this: Peter could have never known the full extent of God’s provision or his own ability to be used… if he hadn’t jumped out of the boat. In front of others. I believe Jesus planted that desire in Peter’s heart to show ALL the disciples what could be done with a recklessly surrendered heart. It was for His glory. Christ was magnified.
That’s what our desire is for our family. That Christ would be showcased in all that we do. This is the story of our family and the story of God’s family, overlapping into one.
After our foster son was reunified with his parents, we sure missed his raspy giggle, silly personality, and slobbery kisses. But the ache was eased by the assurance that we had obeyed the Lord. We remained licensed in our county; however, because we sought to foster children who were younger than our two-year-old son, we rarely received calls from our local children’s services. Or we would miss the calls. Or the situations presented were impossible for our family to accept.
We knew that there were millions of children worldwide in need of families to care for them. We also knew that God had given us a strong desire to grow our family through adoption. A wise preacher once counseled my husband, “God isn’t talking to just everyone about <insert your burden here>. He’s not wasting his time. More than likely, if God is talking to you about <insert your burden here>, you’re the one who’s called to do it.” Cut and dry. Plain and simple. After much research, discussion, and prayer, we decided to pursue an adoption internationally.
Yes, we knew it was expensive. Yes, we knew it could be risky. Yes, we knew it wasn’t for everyone. But God was asking us to trust Him. This was as much about His glory as it was about our family or our future child. We stuck our toes into the sea of faith, tested the waters, and completed an international home study. God placed His seal of approval upon this “faith-step” by reimbursing the cost – to the dollar amount.
Shortly thereafter, we found out we were expecting Adeline! We were ecstatic about the gift of our girl. But we never forgot about our child to come. Our child from across the world. I truly felt as if I were expecting two – one in my womb, but both in my heart. Both of them eagerly anticipated. Both of them just as much a part of who we are as Blaine was at that time.
So there we were. Perched on the edge of the boat, ready to jump, in front of everyone. We made our “faith-step” public so that Christ might be glorified. And you know what? We expected calm waves and smooth sailing. However, this was not God’s plan. Over the course of many months, we were met with torrential delays and crashing disappointments. I will give more details in my next post.
But one thing is for certain. Our journey on the stormy sea of faith has made us much more acquainted with the hands of Jesus. He has held us above water. He has faithfully provided. He has gathered us close. He has truly made the impossible possible in our lives. And because of His special closeness, I’ll take a deep breath, look to Him, and continue pressing forward through the waves.
Romans 5:3-5 “And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; and patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”