Whenever I’ve moved to a new home, I’ve always let the gardens grow without much intervention, just to see what would spring up from the earth. Sometimes after the summer season went by, I had not been so impressed, and was forced to intervene.
Sometimes the ups and downs we go through in life, aren’t what we want either–but they become what we needed to grow. From my human perspective–I don’t like this. The growth should be peaceful, beautiful, and tame right? Yet, just like the growth of any garden, if there isn’t intervention–it becomes wild, weed infested, devoured by insects, and overgrown. Whenever my flower or vegetable garden has gotten to that point, it has always taken a major overhaul to regain the beauty and fruit from it. I have pruned with my loppers, burned the brush pile, raked out the debris, wiped the sweat off my forehead, and nourished what was left. Sometimes however, I will admit, that I’ve often let some areas get so bad that I would have to uproot and just turn everything under–praying the next season would supply what I really wanted.
I now look back at seasons you journeyed with me through–our adoption season, our transition, and the messiness of healing. Honestly, I watched God overhaul things–overhaul us. To say it was painful, grieving, and overwhelming–would be an understatement. I’ve never depended upon God like that before, faced such opposition, and yet faced such support. I witnessed God’s faithfulness in ways that I know I wouldn’t have had I not said yes to the opportunity to become an adoptive parent of four. What would I say now? What would I say a year or more later after laboring through it all day by day? I would say–God showed up. He worked miracles. He did miracles all around us, in us, and some we are still experiencing.
We received our youngest son Timothy out of much darkness–after he asked God for a new heart and new mind. He now shines brighter than any nighttime star. His joy and love has taught me much about the power of love, prayer, endurance, faithfulness, self-control, myself, and the transforming power of God when He willingly and visibly acts. Timothy no longer struggles with anxiety, paralyzing fears, anger, destruction, or worry. He’s learned how to trust, breathe and pray through difficult situations, share his feelings, endure the injustices of life, and give out of a well spring of love. He greets me smiling every morning in his footie Paw Patrol pajamas (thank God they still make pajamas like that in a size 7/8 for boys) and he’ll pick up a broom without being asked–just because he wants to bless me in the morning. He will forgive his brother–even if it’s the fiftieth time he’s had to that day. He chooses not to hit his brother back when he’s been hit. He will play and giggle with everyone in the family and not shy away. He cares for the needs of his heifer with every ounce of strength his small frame can handle–no one can move a hay bail in the morning like Timothy can! He makes me smile and I give thanks everyday. So, thank you to all of you who prayed with us, God has been gracious, merciful, and good. He has done a miracle.
So, I guess I’m one that can say I know for a fact, that God gives us what we need, not what we always want. Whether it was living in an RV with five children while traveling the Midwest as a family on the pipeline, living in new places every few months for a year, leaving family or friends, trudging through the international adoption paperwork process, traveling to Latvia alone to finalize our adoption of our two daughters and son, sending my husband off to live in another state month after month for over a year while I labored with Timothy and Joshua, comforting or ministering to our shaken family, watching God prune my beliefs and preferences away, witness Him sever friendships, teach me how to set painful boundaries, depend upon him every second, or how to address my own needs while caring for my larger than average family–God gave me what I needed also. He helped me grow in endurance, strength, perseverance, belief, trust, capability, dependence, and helped me mature in my faith. He brought me low and stripped away prideful ideas–overhauling this gal only to rebuild me. I’m quieter now, more thoughtful, prayerful, bold, and fearless. I now see the necessity and power of praying God’s written word and the transforming power of His grace when His children seek Him, surrendered, repentant, and broken.
I feel more equipped to share with you on a level that I might not have before. I don’t want anyone walking away from what I write or speak saying, “Hugh, well that was a waste of my time.” I honestly don’t have any extra time to waste–even at this moment, my kids are doing their morning responsibilities, I have sickies in the house, and I need to get out of my pajamas. So, I hope you’ll find my time with you worth it and won’t hesitate to let me know if whatever I share is even a smidge encouraging in your own life–because I am simply a witness to God’s faithfulness and encouragement in my own.
So, in summery, please know, God will meet all of your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus–it’s a promise and while the methods He uses may not be what you want–assuredly it will be exactly what you need and exactly what you need to share!
“They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb
and by the word of their testimony…”