One of the questions that we hear constantly these days is, "when will Esther be home?". My, how we wish we knew the answer to that question. Only God knows and unfortunately He doesn't share His calendar. Not that this momma hasn't asked Him a million times for a sneak peek at it. :) But we are trusting that He had that date on His calendar long before the foundation of this world; and in His perfect timing He will reveal that day to us.
Ethiopia has recently closed down several unethical orphanages and shuffled the children in them into upstanding, ethically run orphanages. Of course, this means lots of back tracking has to be done on these children that don't have proper paperwork on file. This, along with the government taking every measure to make sure that every child adopted from their country is a "true orphan", has caused a slow down in the process. Of course this is a very good thing for everyone involved and it's hopefully paving the way for a much better system of adoption in Ethiopia in the future. I'm thankful that the government in Ethiopia has the children's best interest at heart, but I'd be lying if I said that makes it easy and painless for us to wait.
This photo portrays a pretty accurate picture of our hearts right now.....
Like this picture, the details are blurry and uncertain, but our hearts are longing for this chair to be filled. And yes, this picture will be retaken when this chair is no longer empty. Praise God!
We strongly believe that one reason for this extended wait is because God had a much bigger plan from the beginning than we could have ever imagined. I even thinks its likely that if we knew the whole plan from the beginning, in fear we might have said, "NO" to adoption. We have spent a lot of time lately praying over this adoption and we are so excited to see what God has in store for our family. In the meantime, God has laid a message on our hearts of what He is requiring of us right now.... He wants us to trust in Him while we "wait".
It would be so easy to waste this precious time by sitting idle and wishing for a phone call, but instead we are choosing to use this time to worship Him and serve Him. We are learning so much from our Father right now that we would likely miss out on if He were a God who was more concerned with "my agenda" than HIS. Thank God He knows what's best for us. I am certain I would miss so many of His blessings if I were in control. Don't think there's not days where my flesh says "I'd just as soon miss the lesson and get on with this process".... but deep in my heart I know that Shawn and I will both look back on this season and know that the wait was worth the gain.
I have revisited this song on my ipod many times lately. If you are in that place of "waiting" for God to move a mountain in your life, I encourage you to watch this video and focus your thoughts on what God is calling you to do "today".
"Yet the LORD longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the LORD is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!" Isaiah 30:18
(pause my music at the bottom of the page)