There have been a number of times in my life where a certain thought, idea, or feeling popped up, seemingly out of nowhere, and implanted itself deep inside, not willing to budge or to be challenged. "I am true," the silent idea seemed to echo....
Where did this idea come from? Who put it there? Why am I so certain this idea is true, when there may be no logical explanation for it?
Those are some of the questions I tend to throw back at the intangible idea that is now ingrained deep within my person. Sometimes I try to deny it, rationalize it away, or tell myself I am just letting my imagination run wild. Sometimes, my imagination may be running wild. However, at other times I have no doubt God placed this truth in my mind and in my heart for his glory. The truth is just so loud and perfectly timed and peaceful that I know it comes from my heavenly father.
Francis Bacon once said, "Knowledge is the rich storehouse for they glory of the Creator and the relief of man's estates." Sometimes knowledge is gained through traditional avenues such as education, training, and/or experience. Sometimes, God simply imparts it. Either way, I think it is important to recognize, as Bacon did, that knowledge is for the glory of the Creator.
Months before coming home with Big Sister, I began to sense God trying to direct my attention to her bedroom. Then, the revelation hit. I saw it. I felt it. I could see and sense what God was trying to prepare me for. I have even shared this story with some of you before she arrived home. Big Sister would be hurting and scared, that was certain. I saw her (not physically, but this is what I felt as revealed truth) sitting on her bed crying. The giver of truth let me know this would be happening quite frequently. I shook my head in agreement and prayed for wisdom and discernment. I understood not to be overly concerned when she wanted to retreat to her room, but to be cognizant of her emotions and check on her frequently. She needed to know that I was there and I cared. She needed to know I would not abandon. Note: this particular scenario did not happen with Sporty or Sassy. There were distinct revealed truths for each of them, to be sure...but nothing having to do with wanting to be alone.
For the first two to three weeks after arriving home, we were all enjoying the Honeymoon. Everyone was on the their best behavior, wearing big smiles, and celebrating a whole bunch of firsts. Everything was smooth sailing. Almost too easy, to be honest. One night, I voiced just how easy things were going to my husband. (To which he shook his head at me like I was crazy and said something along the sarcastic lines of 'why don't we add five more?!') The very next day, things were no longer so easy. Ha! God, your timing is hilarious. I get it...you are in control and I should learn to keep my mouth shut. :-) Adoption and orphan care is never easy. It's always messy. I should have known better.
Regardless, just as God prepared me and showed what would be happening, Big Sister has been wanting to retreat to her room a lot. She can be easily overwhelmed and I know is hurting deeply. She hides it well on the surface, but I know the truth. She is scared and she feels alone. Sometimes her eyes look so distant. When she feels overwhelmed, she goes to her room, locks the door, and cries on her bed. She reads and writes and processes. I go to check on her frequently. I encourage her to come out and join in, but don't force the issue. Too much is already out of her control. She is out of her room enough during the day, getting exercise, eating healthy, playing, and engaged with the family. So, I am not overly concerned. I would probably be more concerned had God not given me the peaceful reassurance that this would be happening. Everyone else in our home needs to be bribed or coerced in order to retreat to his or her room, so this is a new experience for all of us.
I can only wonder what must be going through her mind. What she is feeling. How alone she must feel at times, even though she is surrounded by the love of a noisy child-filled home. Orphan care is messy indeed.
I don't completely understand the in's and out's of how God communicates with us, how God reveals his will. I am not sure anyone does, but I have learned that his communication is always peaceful. Never anxious or fear-filled. His message is firm and reassuring, like a parent encouraging a child, "You can do it!" I have also learned that it is hard to hear God's still, quiet voice when my noisy, rambling thoughts are left to run free. I must silence my own fears, my own thoughts, and simply rely on my Father's guidance.
Of course, there are times when I would love to see the big picture. There are times, plenty of times, when I want more information than God is willing to give, but I know God knows me better than I know myself and wanting what is best for me, simply supplies what is needed in the present. For now, I know that I have a hurting child who needs me to be present. My marching orders were quite simple: Show up. Be present. Love big. Mainly, don't forget to show up.
Isn't that what we are all called to do? Really, it can be that simple at times. Show up and allow God to work through us. But don't forget to show up!
I love the Old Testament book Daniel. I find it quite fascinating on many levels. In the second chapter, Daniel is praising God for revealing the meaning of the King Nebuchadnezzar's dream to him. Daniel says, "Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are his....he reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness; and light dwells with him."
What Daniel and Bacon have in common is that they both realized that God reveals things for his glory, not our own. Wisdom and truth belong to God. If God happens to reveal a truth to any one of us, it is always for his glory. We needn't know the reasons or the in's and out's, as I am learning. We don't need to know what will happen five days or even five minutes from now. We simply need to show up and love big. When we do this, God fills in the gaps in any and all ways necessary.
After all, this whole story...that story that is being written each and every day...is about God's purpose for God's creation. We are just servants called to love big and show God's love to a hurting world. A cool thing happens along the 'love big road'...God reveals his truths and we grow closer to him and to his purpose in our lives. It is a messy road. Seldom easy and rigged with traps, the road traveled on the path to our eternal home could be one in darkness or filled with light. I am forever grateful for the lamp at my feet and light on my path (Psalm 119:105)!
For now, I ask that you please pray for Big Sister. While God prepared my heart for her struggles, it hurts me to see her in pain. I know that we are healing and that healing takes time. We are still building trust, learning about each other. I feel like I have known her for years, although she has only been home one month. We have come so far already, but we have a long road ahead. Please pray for our wisdom as parents, that we can handle situations calmly and compassionately and in ways that are useful for building each other up. Please pray that we continue to grieve forward, in hope. Thank you for journeying with us!