I recently saw this quote by Pastor Charles Stanley, and although our precious daughter in China is not an "object," I can relate to what Pastor Stanley is saying here VERY MUCH. Today marks day 50 in the wait for our Letter of Approval (LOA) from China. In essence, we are waiting for China's final approval to adopt He Tong so she can become Jenna Jean Preston and part of our family.
We were told that waiting for LOA can take up to 90 or even 120 days, but sometimes LOAs come quicker and sometimes they come slower. There is no rhyme or reason as to when LOAs come to families waiting to bring their babies home. And I'll be honest in saying this wait is SOOOOOO VERY HARD! Every time my phone rings, I hope it is our adoption agency saying "Your LOA is here!" As the days go by without that phone call, my heart aches all the more. Knowing who our daughter is and not being able to get on a plane to bring her home goes against every fiber in my body. BUT....I must continue to trust my Heavenly Father, who has Jenna in the palm of His hands, and I must trust that the process to bring her home is also in His perfect timing.
So in this difficult and emotional time of waiting, the Lord is teaching me many things. One thing I am learning is the importance of resting in the love of my Heavenly Father. On Mother's Day, we went to Passion City Church and heard Christy Nockels share an amazing talk focused on motherhood. I think I cried the majority of her time speaking and singing! But one thing in particular that she said really penetrated my heart:
"One of the greatest things we can do for our children is to live knowing we are loved."
If there is one "thorn in my flesh" (oh how I wish there were only one!), it is my struggle to rest...to be still...to wait patiently...to let my Heavenly Father lavish His love and grace and blessings on me. I am a list maker, a do-er, a get-it-done type of girl...so for me to "live knowing [I] am loved" is to allow myself to rest, especially during this time of waiting. It's much easier to keep my mind and body BUSY because then I have less time and energy to think about Jenna and how difficult this waiting really is.
However, when I learn to "Be still, and know that He is God" (Psalm 46:10), I am able to focus my thoughts, prayers, and "busy-ness" on Him and how much He loves me. And in loving me, I know He is also loving and caring for my daughter that I cannot be with yet.
So as we wait for LOA and then all the paperwork that comes after that and then the wait to get approval to travel to China, I will strive to rest (quite an oxymoron!) and show my children, all four of them, that I am loved by my Heavenly Father. And hopefully as I learn to be loved, they will catch a glimpse of the love God has for them!