Saturday, June 25, 2011

He Gives and Takes Away

As you can see by the last 5 posts or so, life has been traveling at the speed of light. We have had a FULL summer and its only June 25. But what I haven't shared is the emotional roller coaster we've been on in the midst of all the other activities. For starters, during our vacation we found out 3 of the families adopting from HCRM got out of IBESR (the social services department in Haiti) where our dossier has been sitting since February 1. We were overjoyed for these families but disappointed we were not also making progress. Two of the families were submitted to IBESR before us, one a month after us. And somehow our dossier was looked over. Nothing in Haiti makes much sense to us linear thinking Americans. But I'm sure there's a good reason...a God-reason for this delay. But that doesn't always soothe this aching-momma's heart. When we found out the other families made it out of IBESR we were at least hopeful our dossier would pass through there soon, maybe even a matter of days. So the long hold-the-cell-phone-all-day wait began for that precious phone call. Day after day, nothing. Week after week, nothing. This coming week will be six long weeks of intense waiting.... and almost 5 months of waiting in all since entering IBESR....or, as I see it, 1 year and 5 months since the process all began for us. I'm learning how to wrestle with God and rest in God. Actually- I'm learning to surrender. I've fought all I can fight in the spiritual realm and now I'm sitting and waiting for God to move. I canceled my trip to Haiti for June thinking we may get out of IBESR and get a court date soon. Since that has not happened I have been sad that I didn't go visit Keemberlie. But some friends have visited and they say she is doing well. When I can't be there, it is a comfort to know the Spirit is there - protecting her, teaching her, watching her, recording her days that I cannot see.

The week after returning home from Charleston I received a phone call from my dad. I could tell immediately something was wrong. Without going into all the details, during my stay in Charleston I wondered if my mother was dying. She has been very sick for 26 years.... that is the understatement of the century. The woman has been through it, as has our family out of concern for her. I was sure my dad was calling to say she had died. His voice sounded that bad. But as it turned out, he was taking her to the hospital (again, skipping details out of respect for my mother's privacy).  During her stay, the hospital decided to reduce some meds she had been on for years. We were very concerned about withdraws and how her body would handle it. But surprisingly her withdraws were not bad. A week later she returned home free of these specific meds which was, in and of itself, a complete miracle. We were excited about this new change. But hesitant as we were not sure it would last.

The next day, the day before the No Double Yellow Line event, I received another sad phone call. My dad was in tears not for my mom this time, but for my sister. At 12 weeks pregnant she was miscarrying. She has two beautiful girls and had survived the first 12 weeks of exhaustion and nausea with excitement that she may have a son this time around. As you can imagine she was devastated...and we were all devastated for her. The morning of the Event she had a DNC. I would have much rather been in SC with her at this time. I was carrying around a heaviness for my sister that weekend that no words could express. She is doing well now, though still grieving. Please pray for her and her family as they process what has happened and look ahead to the future.

Fast forward to the Saturday before Father's Day. My dad texted me, "give us a call when you can". I immediately worried that something else was wrong. When he answered I could hear joy in his voice. He put the phone on speaker so I could talk with mom. This is not unusual. You see, my mom - among her many physical problems - has had strokes that we had assumed caused her to lose the use of her voice as well as caused her to sit and walk completely hunched over - head hanging down to knees. She was also sleepy most of the day - to the point of falling asleep while eating. So, my dad often used the speaker phone so she wouldn't have to hold a phone to her ear and also so he could tell me what she was trying to say since I could barely hear her.

Well, imagine my surprise when my mother starts speaking in the voice I remember her having when I was a child. I couldn't believe it. It must have been the drugs causing her to think she couldn't speak. I was having my first real conversation with my mom in YEARS! I was amazed!

And it just got better. On Father's Day I received another text from my dad. This time it was a picture of my mom all dressed up for church - with hair fixed and makeup on, a dress and she was SITTING UP! I know most of my readers have nothing to compare this picture to, but trust me when I say it is evidence of a MIRACLE!

I immediately texted dad back telling him she looked so beautiful. Then I thought - CRAZY GIRL - CALL THEM! So I called and dad said mom was crying tears of joy because of my response. We had our second great conversation. Both of us in tears over what God was doing before our eyes. She is being healed. The restoration has been miraculous - I mean seriously miraculous. After 26 years of constant struggle, she is coming back to life! I cannot tell you how big this is for our family. The joy I hear in my father's voice leaves me speechless. I keep reminding myself that I can now call and talk to my mom, share life's adventures with her. I have her back after all these years! Nothing I can say here will put to words how big this mighty God's power is to save!

He gives and takes away. There is so much I don't understand. Why isn't Keemberlie home yet? Why isn't our paperwork moving along? Why did my self-less, always serving sister have to lose her baby? But in the mystery of his ways, I'm learning to trust and fully believe. Because, though he takes away he also saves. He redeems. He brings the dead back to life.

My dad sent my brother, sister and me the most beautiful email a couple of days ago. Only my dad could put 26 years of struggle and pain into 21 of the most beautiful sentences ever written. He's not a man of many words....but oh the depth. He wrote,

How do you explain a miracle.  You can't!  A journey of 26 years has possibly come to an end.  For what ever reason, for what ever purpose God has chosen to heal Nancy.  I have often wondered how so many people could be praying for one person for so long yet no answers.  But that is how God works.  It is of His time and His choosing and when you least expect it.  Only He could have a hand in it and work all things for His glory.  There is no other explanation.  Should I be angry, should I be mad at the wasted years and money.  I chose to be happy and thankful.  Always remind me of that if I fail to head my own advice.  Will this last?  I do not know, but I plan to relish the time of healing.  Thank you for all the positive comments to your mother.  It will be a continual encouragement to her ongoing healing.  Who knows what lies around the corner.  Satan is always prowling about the earth seeking whom he may devour, but our God is powerful, loving and merciful. Only He knows the future and He holds it in His hands.  Praise be to Him and His Son, Jesus, whose blood covers a multitude of sins. We have all sinned and fallen short of His glory.



The Reeds said...

This is amazing! Praise the Lord for your family and especially for your mother and father. I can't imagine how much these victories mean to your family!

Katie rayn said...

With tears flowing, "Praise God from Whom all blessings flow!"

Thank you for sharing. Praying Keemberlie home soon and for your momma heart!

Abby said...

This is truly awesome, Cindy!!!! God is so so faithful. His ways are so not ours, ya know? God is SO awesome, and I praise HIM with you and pray for continued healing for your mom! Thanks for sharing of HIS great power & mercy! REJOICE!!!!!

Debi said...

Rejoicing with you, your parents and family over this amazing miracle!
So true that God is God and there is no understanding of His ways on this side of heaven. He is good all the time no matter how things may look. So we trust and believe and ask and wait and He answers in His perfect timing.
Believing God with you for the moving of mountains on Keemberlie's behalf to bring her home. The waiting time is so hard. Praying God's love and comfort over Keemberie and your family.
Love and hugs and prayers,

Erika Chapman said...

Praise Jesus, Cindy!! Your mom looks beautiful in that pic and the peace on her face is AMAZING!! I saw on FB that your sis had surgery that day and I wondered what was prayers are with your sister and her family and for continued healing and restored sweet time for your parents:) Wow, His ways are not our ways...He keeps us guessing:) Love to you sweet friend! Thanks for sharing this amazing praise!

Sally said...

All I could think about was your dad saying, "In sickness and in health" One day God will say to your Dad, "Well done though good and faithful servant". The strength of your dad speaks volumes. He doesn't have to say a thing. He is an amazing man.

Olivia said...

As I close friend of Kelly and Carissa's, I know the struggle you guys have been through. I too have had a rough situation with my own mother, we have prayed that God would change her, but He hasnt. We know that someday a miracle could come but that it probably wont. You have no idea how thankful I am to read this post. My heart pours out with compassion and joy for your family!!

Olivia said...

As a close friend of Kelly and Carissa's I am overjoyed with this news. Thank you so much for sharing, my heart feels like its going to burst for you guys. I have had a very similar story with my own mother. for many years we hoped and prayed something would change but its only gotten worse with time. So it is especially great to know that sometimes God chooses to heal! (and sometimes he doesnt, but he knows better then we do!!) this post was a huge blessing to me!

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