Six years ago in a booth at Pizza Hut, my husband and I decided we were ready to have children. We had been married for almost four years and were giddy as we dreamed of the chubby cheeked version of ourselves that would be.
We had a plan. We would have two or three biological children and then foster to adopt our youngest. Yet the months came and went and turned into years. Five years to be exact. For five years we waited on God.
What was our move? Do we keep waiting? Do we pursue fostering? We begged God to build our family his way, in his time. But there were nights when I thought the pain of waiting would crush the life out of my heart. The enemy would come and speak doubts and fears. But Christ’s strength held us and led us on.
In February 2013 on a day of fasting and praying at our church God spoke to Joshua and I separately that the time was now. We had freedom to pursue fostering. I remember driving home full of expectation wondering if my child was out there looking at that same moon. We began the paper work journey. We prayed that God would keep us on the time frame of the child he had for us. Over a year later, in March 2014 with home visits, trainings, case studies, and a move to Kansas City to mark the way, our license was finalized.
It felt strange reading those emails of children who needed homes. Every email represented a real heart and soul in a desperate situation. “O God, help us. Direct us.” The day our license was finalized was the first day our Trisha came up in need for placement. We read her email on a Monday morning and plans were made for her to move in the following week. I watched her get out of her case-workers car, with all her earthly belongings in the back. I will never know the strength it took to walk up to our front door, knowing she was at the mercy of whoever was on the other side. I will never understand it, but I loved that adorable 14 year-old the moment I set eyes on her. God confirmed over time that she was the first-born we had been waiting for.
A year ago today, less than two months after getting Trisha, I absent mindedly took a pregnancy test knowing that my doctor would have wanted me to rule it out before going in for an appointment. I had spent so much money on digital tests; this one was from Dollar Tree. As I waited, I straightened the bathroom half forgetting I had taken it, thinking about what I was going to cook for dinner. But there they were. Two clear pink lines. It was the yes that I had longed for an uncountable amount of times. In a shaky voice I called to Josh who didn’t even know I had taken a test. I was speechless, leaning over, propped against the wall when he came in. All I could do was point to the counter. He looked at me with wild eyes, and said, “What? No! Wait! What?! Are you sure?!”. We hugged and cried over that stick with two lines.
Somewhere in that five year waiting room God gave me this scripture;
Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls forth each of them by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing. Is 40:26
In the darkness of my waiting, Christ reminded me to look up to the heavens and think on his might. He reminded me to think on his care and attention for each star, so many that my human mind cannot know the number. He will not overlook or forget one. He whispered to my heart that by the same power and might that he keeps the heavens he attends to the details of his will for my life. If he knows the stars and calls them forth by name each night, he knows my children and would bring them into our family at the exact moment he had determined.
This is my second Mother’s Day. I think of the what the scriptures say about Mary, “But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.” Luke 2:19
You cannot be prepared for the love that comes. Whether it’s a treasured after school chat or a crooked toothless grin I am stunned at God’s goodness. I pray for help to not idolize my two little miracles. I want to remember that in the darkness yet again Christ was there. I want to remember when the waiting felt cruel; the Faithful One never forgot me but was working out his plan for good. I want to remember His strength that gave us hope on the emptiest days. I want the love, affection, and awe I feel for my children to always point me to my greater love.
Whether you are in the darkness and need to lift your eyes to the night sky as you remember God’s mightiness and attention to your every detail. Or whether you are rejoicing in hopes fulfilled this Mother’s day, I hope you remember Him who is eternal. The One that this is all for. The gut wrenching journey of mothering, waiting, growing, loving, and living…it’s all for Him. So on this Mother’s Day as our loved ones remember us, we will remember Christ. We will rejoice in the one that fills our mothering with eternal purpose.
May our mothering be unto you, Christ Jesus.
“And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” Colossians 1:17