Five years ago on Monday, we got the call that forever changed our lives.
Two Rebekahs cried out to God for his intervention...his rescue...on the same day. And because his name is Faithful. Redeemer. He answered.
On January 27th, 2009, I read the words of my son's mother for the first time. God started a revolution in my heart that day and cracked open a window in my life that had been locked down for years.
It's not just life that buried our plans and required us to start new. God has, continually, urged and stirred our hearts beyond our comfort. I can't tell you how many times we've, metaphorically, drawn a line, saying to no one in particular, "We are willing to go this far. We are willing to love this much." No sooner do we put the pen down and God moves our line beyond the horizon. He could keep it within eyesight...but, instead, he asks us to the outer parts. Wooing us with his spirit.
We go. We always go.
Because our love for him is greater than any comparison.
On January 27th, 2014, we got an outer parts call.
We were in the midst of setting up triple bunk beds in preparation for whatever four year old God intended to send our way. Our life is sure to be dominated by them.
I hung up the phone and looked at Ben. I was already neck deep in love, ready to swim away, if it weren't for Ben's steady grip. "No. We didn't sign up for this."
"This is too far."
That morning, I received a note from our foster care case worker. Another family was chosen for Lya and Jamar. Their case worker felt that a family with no children was the best fit. I took the call in stride and knew that God was at work because my response was void of emotion, I just felt peace.
Sibling set number two was moved overnight to a prior foster family's home for a reason unknown to me. That foster family decided to move forward with adoption.
The "no" prompting phone call was from our adoption case worker. She was calling about sibling set number three.
My mind swirled. In four days, we had talked and thought through details on three different sets of siblings. I, officially, fell in love with all six.
Sibling set number three were not part of our plan, but I was drawn to their story...
For now, we'll call them sweet boy and little sis. Sweet boy is four years old (I know, right?) and little sis is four months old. Due to lack of progress, the judge, uncharacteristically, changed the status of the file from reconciliation to adoption, even though these siblings have been in care less than 12 months. Sweet boy is suffering loss as he deals with the painful understanding of no-show visits from his birth mother. Little sis has her own struggles in life as she was drug-exposed and fighting for normalcy inside her little body.
Our case worker asked for our consideration even though the case was outside our plan. Our plan never included legal risk.
I had a conference call with our adoption case worker, the siblings' worker, and the agency supervisor on Wednesday. They are sure that we are the right family. No other family was being considered. They, confidently, expressed their reasons for believing this case will move toward parental termination by April, but they were transparent in making sure we understood the risk.
The siblings' case worker would like to place sweet boy and little sis in our home within the next two/three weeks and then walk us through the steps of court petition, pre-trial, and trial for termination. We have a pretty good idea of what should happen....but this is foster care; anything can happen.
We spent Monday night talking through every scenario, all of our plans, and the ever-steady hand of God in the life of our family.
There are too many thoughts to pound out, here, tonight.
But, I wanted to give you an update of where we're at...
On Tuesday morning, we will go to the agency to meet our lovies for the first time.
We said yes. Yes to God. Yes to risk. Yes to sweet boy and little sis.
We don't know God's purpose, but we're sure of its existence.
This will be an interesting journey as the path is unknown. The only confidence we have is in the one who makes known. We are desperate for his guidance as we follow a plan that wasn't written by us...
(If you have any experience with drug-exposed infants please email me. I covet your thoughts/advice)