Sunday, July 15, 2012

He Painted the Sky For Me

Throughout the summer of 2011 I was in a deep, deep, DEEP and constant place of prayer for our papers to exit an important office in Haiti. It was a VERY intense summer of waiting, praying and warring for our daughter there. One day I'll be able to share further details about what we were really warring against. You will understand better then. But that must wait for now. Just know it was seriously intense - more intense prayer than I have ever known before.

On July 10, 2011 - right in the middle of that intense time -  we arrived at Glorieta, NM where we were leading worship for a youth camp that week. We were welcomed by the most beautiful double rainbow against deep blue skies. The pictures below do not do it justice as I took them on my iPhone.

July 10, 2011 - Glorieta, NM

I was immediately reminded of God's promises. My eyes teared up as I thought to myself, "That rainbow is just for me today." As we exited the car, Libby, who didn't know anything of what was going on in my mind/heart, grabbed my hand and said sweetly, "God sent that rainbow just for you today." She had no idea what I had been thinking. She just spoke what God has put on her heart and it was such confirmation. The promises of God kept me going that week, but still I ached for some movement of papers, anything. On our way home on July 16th. we were passing wide, flat fields of wind turbines and a dust storm was picking up. In the middle of that dust storm before one drop of rain fell, again the most amazing double rainbows painted the skies. It was if God was saying, "there is a storm about you but I am in the midst of it and my promises are still real."

July 16, 2011

Hopeful that the storm in the midst of our adoption journey would end soon, I spent the next few months expecting God's promises to be fulfilled any day. But they weren't, not right away at least. It wasn't until late September that we exited that office. And what's more... I had no idea then how much further we had to go. I had nooooooooo idea. I never dreamed we would be waiting for another year.

Fast forward to the beginning of this, the 3rd summer waiting for Sunny. We were waiting for her paperwork to exit yet another office. But this time, it was the last Haitian office aside from obtaining Sunny's passport from Immigration. As near as the end seemed, still we had no timeline. MOI typically takes 2-16 weeks to exit, so even in that final office we couldn't know how long our turn would take.

Psalm 10 - particularly the end of it - has been my psalm over this adoption for a long time. Verses 17-18 say, "You, Lord, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry, defending the fatherless and the oppressed, so that mere earthly mortals will never again strike terror." ("The Message" version is really awesome too!) Often, in addition to my reading from "The One Year Bible" daily, I sometimes read the Psalm for the date of that day. So when I remembered that it was our 10th week in MOI and I recalled the double rainbows on July 10th exactly 1 year to date I decided to read Ps. 10 as well. It seemed like the perfect day for God to move us out of MOI. But July 10, 2012 passed and we didn't exit MOI.

And then came Friday, July 13...the exact middle between July 10 and 16. That morning I was exhausted from the waiting. I know that sounds silly to some, but when you wait every second of the day for the phone to ring with good news, by Friday you are exhausted and starting to ache over waiting through another weekend. (All you adoptive moms out there KNOW what I'm talking about!) Well, I had planned to sleep in that morning but at 5:57 AM I woke up. I literally said, "Jesus, if you are asking me to get up and have time with you, I want you to know I will spend time with you after I sleep in." Not the best response, I know, but that's what I said. About 1 minute later (and an hour too early) my girls both popped into my room to tell me they wet their sheets. "Ok, God. I'm up." Sheets were changed, girls were set before TV for cartoons and I went to my closet to meet with Jesus. The OT passage for the day was mostly a passage of Thanksgiving that David declared. After reading it through weighted eyes the first time I decided to read it again as thanksgiving from my own heart. After that I continued reading. And what was the Psalm for the day??? PSALM 10!!!! I prayed boldly, reminding God (as if He needs reminding) that He calls himself the defender of orphans, the Father to the fatherless.

Only a couple of hours later I received that priceless phone call and we had exited MOI that morning! Yes, my friends - on the 10th week in MOI, during the week of July 10th that God marked out one year prior, and on a day in which Ps. 10 was highlighted in my quiet time - God delivered on His promise!  Do you know what the significance of the number 10 in Hebrew? The number 10 means:

Completeness of order, marking the entire round of anything, is, therefore, the ever-present signification of the number ten. It implies that nothing is wanting; that the number and order are perfect; that the whole cycle is complete.

To God be the glory! He is faithful! And what's really sweet is that He wanted me to start that day with Him. He was not going to have it any other way, but to have me saying thank you from the very start.

For the first time in 2.5 years we have a basic timeline. Sunny should be home no later than the end of September. Exiting MOI was the equivalent of receiving a referral for our previous two adoptions. It shed a light at the end of the tunnel. It was a day to rejoice and give thanks!!

Tuesday, July 17, Sunny is headed into PAP to sign for her passport. By the end of that week our papers should be in the US Embassy. We will be done with Haitian gov't and about 8 weeks later - we should have a visa for her to come home!!!!!!!!!!

Its so exciting to see now how God was marking this week for me one whole year ago, in my darkest most difficult part of this journey. He is so faithful to give encouragement, hope, and comfort when we need it. Those rainbows really were just for me. The God of the universe painted the skies just for me!

He moves heaven and earth for us, for orphans, - for YOU, friends! Believe it!

Lastly... keep praying. We don't have her home yet. Don't stop! Thanks!

Friday, July 13, 2012

May and June in a Nutshell

May was.....
Billy's first song-writers retreat for Trinity Fellowship (success!!)

Mother's Day with 2 beauties! (and MD #3 without Sunny)

a new puppy (a.k.a. Henna.....or "i'm cute but i like to poop in your house")
a visit from Katie "Chicken"

new love numero uno

new love numero dos (tee hee!) 

May was finishing homeschool early to make a trip back to SA to see some dear old friends like the Martines (and to meet cutie pie Zebene too!)

and Chinese sisters

and hugs with Lily

and Sea World, of course!

and fun in the sun

with other adoptive mommies who get the long journey of adoption deeply

and curly locks made long when wet

and fellowship that goes waaaaaaaay back

and best friends

and friends that remind us of Sunny

and friends who have fought the last 2.5 years with us
 June was........

 new friends in our new house for summer nights

and puppy play time

And Gracie's 3rd Gotcha Day (CAN YOU BELIEVE ITS BEEN 3 YEARS!)

and smiles that change you forever

and sisterhood that only God can put together... on a side patio that's divine

June was ice cream cake to celebrate one of our happiest days

and camp with the band kids

and all the colors God made:)

and the realization that our time on the road for the last 12 years has come to an end with our last camp together with our band....

and saying goodbye to the most genuine, loyal, special band ever

and our last morning after a night of tears 

and a quiet exit of a leadership few can compare

and a drive back to the new that is ahead as the 6th month of our new life in Amarillo rings in

And Father's day with the best Dad and his girls 

and new buddies that make us smile

and special alone time with my chocolate baby cake while Libby's at camp

And fullness beyond what can be imagined mixed with longing that reminds us of victories to come....

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