Recently, in regards to adopting a special needs child and since this fiasco has begun, I have been told things such as, "You're an amazing person" and "What you're doing is amazing" and "I don't know how you do it, you're incredibly strong."
I don't see it that way. It's just what God has called me to do and He is the one who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13 says I can do all this through Him who gives me strength.
I am a wife, a mother, and a special education teacher.
Most importantly, I am a child of God.
That is where my joy is found. That is where my comfort is found. But the God of our universe is not here for our comfort. He is here to be served. Ephesians 2:8-10 tells us For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
I am unworthy of His grace, love, and blessings, Some Russians have pointed out that Polina is NOT mine and I do not "deserve" her. It's true. She is mine only in my heart, but she is God's creation and it is only by His grace that we have come this far in this process and it will by His grace if I am ever to bring her home. All children are a gift from our creator, and he calls us specifically to care for the orphan. James 1:27 says Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
And so, I will continue to do what I can to show my love for Polina and to fight not only for her, but for all of the orphans. I believe this is what God wants me to do. Esther 4:14 says, "For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise ... from another place, but you and your father's house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?"
Since our first trip to Moscow and meeting the people of Russia, it has been clear to me that this adoption is about more than just Polina. I didn't know what that meant or that I would find myself here today. God knew this was going to happen and only He knows how it will end. God is in control of all things. This was not my plan.
Our plan is not always His plan. Our timing is not always His timing. Ours is flawed. His is perfect.
This law may be something temporary, just a set back until His timing is right for her to come home. But it may be eternity before I am reunited with the child who is my daughter in my heart!
I have to choose how I will react. I could withdraw and run away from God. but I pray that I will allow him to use me through this to bring others to know Him.
On our first trip to Russia, as we rode the Metro in Moscow, I commented to Jason, "These people need the love of Jesus." To smile or make eye contact with others was to stick out like a sore thumb. Forget the Walmart rule of greeting others within 10 feet as we walked the streets! We actually found ourselves trying to look down and to frown. But not always having walked with God, I understand it.
The people of Russia have endured, and continue to endure, much beyond what most Americans can comprehend. A Russian commented on my blog in reference to some unfriendly comments, "They were so long tortured, robed, raped, misled and deceived that they are not able to react as normal people. Forgive them they don't know what they are doing." I realize that sir, and I do forgive them as Jesus Christ set the example when he prayed on the cross about those who were killing him, "Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do."
An American commented on my blog that Americans and Russians would be the closest of friends, if we really had a chance to know each other. As an American who has met Russians and broken beyond the outside, I find that to be sooo true!
Philippians 4:4-7 says, "Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
And so, I leave you today with a prayer.
Dear Lord Jesus, with heavy hearts, we rejoice in knowing that you are in control and you have a good and perfect plan for the lives of those who love you. Thank you that we have had the time we have had with Polina and the opportunity to open our eyes and hearts to the people of Russia. I thank you for her caregivers that love her so much for the the Russian people who have poured out their love and support to us! Lord, we ask that you remove our anxiousness, that you help us to rest in your ever-present peace. We ask that you move the hearts of those in power to do what is right, just, and holy. Speak to their hearts Lord and show yourself to those who do not know you so that we may be brothers and sisters in Christ! Finally Lord, protect the orphans as we know you are the father of the fatherless! Thank you for dying on the cross so that we may have eternity with you and that we have hope for that future absent of the pain and sorrow we know today. Amen.